Baptism at The Shores
On Sunday, August 23, during the morning worship service, The Shores had a very special event. This event was the baptism of Andrew Medica, great grandson to our resident, Margaret Medica-Pace. This was the first baptism at the Shores in a very long time.
As wonderful as this was for residents, it didn’t happen by plan. Let me explain. Local pastor of Somers Point UMC, Rev. Tom Starks, was the volunteer Wednesday Chapel speaker on July 29.
During that visit, our Chaplain, Rev. Beth Mallozzi, inquired if there was any assistance she could be to him in his ministry. It happened that he needed coverage during his vacation at Somers Point UMC on August 23.
Beth said, yes. Then, Rev. Tom got a call from the Medica family for a baptism for that week. Trying to get the family to move to a different date was problematic, when Tom realized that the candidate for baptism was the great grandson to our resident. He spoke to the family about Rev. Beth doing the sacrament, and they were delighted … with the connection to the Shores.
Then, another twist in the story occurred when Rev. Beth realized that Margaret Pace was not going to be able to leave the building for her family’s baptism. In talking with the Medica family, Beth offered to switch the baptism to The Shores at their regular service, which was often attended by Mrs. Pace. After considering this carefully, the change was made a few days before Sunday.
Rev. Beth was able to get help from residents here in making last minute changes to the worship plan and music. The service was well attended, and Andrew, newly baptized, was introduced face to face with the worshiping residents, family and friends. The Medica family was fully present for this special day, including Margaret Pace who has been the inspiration in the family for their faithful walk with God.
The diverse congregation at The Shores at Wesley Manor represented well the whole of the Christian church into which Andrew was baptized. Margaret Pace has been a lifelong Lutheran. The baby’s family has many Methodists. In baptism, we are adopted by God into the universal or catholic (small ‘c’) church. This adoption is not as a Methodist or Lutheran or Roman Catholic. So, our setting was a uniquely appropriate representation of that church, speaking for God’s church everywhere to welcome Andrew as a brother in Christ.