Despite the challenges presented by the pandemic, Brisbane Adventist College (BAC) in Queensland finished 2021 on a high note with 12 students baptised in one single event on November 12, totalling 21 baptisms throughout the year.
With a room filled with parents and an affirming community from four different local churches, the evening was described as a “truly wonderful celebration” by attendees who watched the students rise from the waters smiling and pumping their fists in the air.
“I have been to many wonderful baptisms that have been filled with praise, love and joy, but I have never experienced a baptism with more excitement and celebration than this one. No wonder Jesus admonished us to become as little children,” said former BAC principal Leanne Entermann.
Before performing the baptisms, BAC chaplains Pastors Annalise Cherry and Jean-Pierre Martinez invited the candidates to share their testimony, publicly affirming their decision and encouraging others to give their hearts to Jesus.
“They shared their testimonies with such infectious joy, and when we gave an appeal for baptism, about 25 other students came forward, declaring their desire to be baptised in the future,” said Pastor Cherry.
Working intentionally with students throughout the school year, Pastors Cherry and Martinez aim to run attractive spiritual projects to draw the students near to God while building a strong sense of community. Running Bible studies, small groups, chapels and the memorable week of worship, the chaplains receive support from a diverse team of volunteers, including local pastors, elders and church members.
Among the 12 students baptised in November, 11-year-old Naomi testifies of the positive impact that the spiritual projects and caring school team had on her decision. “I was inspired at school by the teachers and pastors to make the decision, so I wanted to be baptised in the same place,” she said, adding that she hopes her decision will influence others.
“I wanted to be baptised at school so I could declare it publicly that I wanted to dedicate my life to God and have an influence on others who would think ‘Well, if she did it, maybe I can do it as well'”.