Kaste suomalaisten kokemuksena ja saarnojen aiheena
Baptism as a Finnish experience and the subject of sermons
The article examines baptism considering the meanings and interpretations given to it by Finns and Finnish preachers. The sermons collected from the Finnish Lutheran sermon database Digipostilla (KotimaaPro) are compared to Finns’ perceptions of baptism, examining the differences and similarities in the conceptualization of baptisms. The sermons were categorized as follows: communality, participation in church activities, customs and traditions, obtaining a name, faith and following Jesus, the childhood of God, blessing and grace of God, and salvation and eternal life. Finns’ perceptions and the teachings concerning baptism were largely similar. The materials also complemented each other, as Finns emphasized baptism as an opportunity and sermons emphasized it as a task. While Finns emphasized baptism as an individual good performed by family, preachers concentrated on aspects of service, general priesthood and mission.