Spiritual Life Series, vol. 6
Unfortunately, today the august Mysteries of man's spiritual rebirth in Christ and the gifts of the Holy Spirit, namely Holy Baptism and Chrismation, are usually treated as a social obligation and an occasion for vain ostentation... Anyone who compares the divinely inspired writings of the Holy Fathers concerning the Mystery of Holy Baptism with today's reality as it is observed in our holy churches in left confused. It is with sadness that one realizes most of today's Christians are essentially uncatechized.
Our fervent prayer, therefore, is that the gift and compassionate love of God offered in these sacred mysteries should be perceived and understood, and that our participation in them be marked with both joy and godly fear. Rather than being the fulfillment of a social obligation, may they become the starting point of spiritual struggle and the glorification of God who loves mankind.
Author: Hieromonk Gregorios, Elder of the Cell of St. John the Theologian, Koutloumousiou Monastery, Mount Athos (trans. Fr. Michael Monos)