The Times of India reported : Pope Benedict XVI who baptized 21 kids on Sunday recently, said that every new member of the faith acquires the character of a son or daughter of the Church “ starting from a Christian name. “
There is an anonymous Chinese proverb, “ The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their right names. “
In the Holy Bible, the Book of Proverbs informs us, “ A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches. “ Prov.22:1
The Christian name for a Catholic child is the armour of God which he wears in the face of life’s obstacles, criticism and hate. Their name overcomes all despite hardships – and, is a witness to faith when they make success and reach pinnacles of victory.
In the Book of Exodus the Lord spoke to Moses saying: “ for you have found favour in my sight, and I know you by name. “Ex.33:17
Christian names can be chosen from the many books published with lists of Christian names, their origins and meanings. Names of saints, common names and names of ancestors are all mandatory today. You do not need to be ‘mod’ in these difficult times when our faith needs to radiate the glory of God in the confrontation of evil and injustice. Your Christian name is an oasis for the rest of mankind.
It is important to hear what Jesus had to say about a Christian name: “ To him the gatekeeper opens ; the sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. “ John 10:3.
Our journey to God is threatened by the rising forces of evil. We must, together bear His cross. We must deflect the darkness of violence and the radical pressure of people in our midst. We can do it when we raise the banner of our Christian name.
William Shakespeare, in his famous tragedy, Othello, he wrote: But he that filches from me my good name robs me of that which not enriches him, and makes me poor indeed.
Jesus said to saint Mark, for truly I say to you, whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because you bear the name of Christ, will by no means lose his reward. “Mk.9:41.
Let us think about change. If you already have a non-Christian name, and you are an elderly person – do not be troubled, but do propagate, influence, and insist that new births in the family should have a Christian name at baptism. It’s not hard to do. There are many beautiful and colourful names to decide on.
Pope Benedict XVI will be pleased. He made it very clear in his homily at the baptism of 21 children in the
Vatican chapel : ‘every new member is a son or daughter of the Church, beginning with a Christian name.
“ …and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.” Gen. 11: 4