It was a quiet ceremony on a hot day in Helmond. It couldn't have been more perfect, everything I was praying it would be to welcome my children into the world of the Lord. My little boys all dressed up in their "handsome" clothes and looking pretty spiffy to stand before the church and God, both answering "Ja, ik wil (yes, I will)" when the pastor asked if they chose to be baptised. The candles were lit in the tiny reed-covered chapel, and the statue of the virgin Mary stood above their heads. It was a private celebration with just our family, Erwin's godparents, and most importantly, the kids godparents. The only ones missing from the equation were my family, but that was to be expected under the circumstances. I wish they could have shared in the celebration. But, I am so happy to have my children baptised. I feel a relief I couldn't have dreamed possible, and the beautiful service that was given in honor of my children was mesmerizing. I couldn't help but shed a few tears as my children were blessed with the holy water and received a cross of oil upon their foreheads. The prayers were very relative to all that I had asked of the pastor. It wasn't an overly religious event, but more a celebration of my children as children of the Lord. I couldn't have asked for anything even slightly better.
As my boys held their baptism candles I watched in awe. I looked at their godparents sitting on the pews and thanked God yet again for giving my children such special people in their lives. People that I know care about my boys, love them in the manner that God wants them to be loved, and can give them that extra attention that they deserve. My brother Trevor, Jari's godfather, was not there to celebrate the occasion, and for that I was sorry. But Ilse, Lisa, and Erik were there, standing next to my children, these people we hand-picked to share in the lives of our children, people we trust and respect, and will have great meaning in the years to come for our sons.
Oma and Opa, I thank you yet again for helping to create this beautiful celebration. I couldn't do it without your help, as you already know. And as God blesses my children and all those close to them, may He also bless you for being so very important in my life.