Easter is upon us. The dogwoods, fruit trees and azaleas are dazzling our eyes. My students and I are reading texts by Theodore of Mopsuestia. All this has set me to ruminating on new birth and nurture in the Christian life.
When I was growing up, Easter was more about the necessity of believing that the bodily resurrection of Jesus took place than about what it might mean for the believer. I am glad that in recent years Christians have worked hard on Christian initiation, especially for adults, and many have seen Easter as a time for baptism. In many churches, the time before baptism is devoted to significant training in Christian life and faith. Yet, if I can base my judgment on what lay folks seem to want, as well as on what seminary students seem to know about Christian tradition, scripture and possible ways to read it, it appears that much more needs to be said and done about Christian formation.