NOTE: For ease of comprehension, these instructions are written with the assumption that the Celebrant is also the Officiant at the baptism(s).
Before the service, the sexton raises the lid of the font and partially fills it with water. The Paschal Candle (which resides in the baptistry outside Eastertide) is lit.
The following hardware (set out by Altar Guild) goes to the Baptistry before Mass: ewer containing slightly warm water, silver scallop shell, oil of chrism, a few extra lavabo towels, aspersorium and aspergillum, a lavabo or other dish with a few pinches of exorcised salt, and sufficient unlit baptismal candles for the number of baptizands. If the officiant wishes to use the Easter Vigil Baptismal Rite notebook (containing the chant for the Blessing of the Water), that should also be placed on the Baptistry altar; otherwise, the Altar Book from the Lady Chapel (the regular Altar Book, not the Anglican Missal) is placed in the Baptistry.
The Celebrant wears a cope for the first part of the Mass and the Baptism. Chasuble [and all three maniples] draped over the Epistle-side altar rail. MC should remind CR to collect the cope at the Offertory.
The opening versicles and responses appointed for Baptism (pg. 299, BCP) may replace the Collect for Purity, the Summary of the Law, and the Gloria in Excelsis, in which case the Collect of the Day immediately follows the versicles and responses.
After the Sermon, in place of the Nicene Creed, MC and SMs go to center, genuflect, and turn. If the D or CEL is preaching, the others will meet him at the top choir step.
MC goes to “stage left”.
SD goes to stage left.
D goes to stage right.
CEL goes to center.
CEL invites the baptismal party to come forward to choir steps.
The Presentation and Examination take place at the choir steps: baptismal party on transept floor, SMs on top step.
The Apostles’ Creed is used, as part of the Baptismal Covenant, in place of the Nicene Creed. The Prayers for the Candidate(s) take the place of the Prayers of the People.
The Confession of Sin is omitted.
After the Presentation and Examination of the Candidates, the CEL may invite the congregation to cluster toward the baptistry to witness the baptism.
The party then proceeds to the font, via the main aisle, in the following order:
SD holds book open for CEL as he blesses the water and performs the baptism(s).
MC stands ready with extra towels, etc., as needed to dry officiant’s fingers. After each baptism, MC or an assisting cleric lights a small presentation candle from the Paschal candle (if necessary, with the help of someone tall) and gives it to CEL to present to baptizand or baptizand’s parents.
The Peace is NOT, repeat NOT, bidden after the Welcoming of the Newly Baptized. Following this communal prayer the Celebrant scoops baptismal water into the aspersorium. The baptismal party returns to their pews and the Verger leads the procession back to the chancel via the main aisle in the following order:
The D and SD hold edges of CEL’s cope while he sprinkles the congregation with the baptismal water during the procession back to the chancel.
[Verger and choir clergy return to their stalls.] MC and SMs line up at foot of altar steps where MC cues genuflection. CEL hands off aspersorium and aspergillum to MC, who retires to sedilia. CEL then turns and bids the Peace, comme d’habitude.
The Mass continues with the Offertory, beginning with laying on of incense. CEL changes to chasuble after laying on incense.