Christ’s birth, the wise men’s visit, the baptism of Christ, and the Cana miracle are all part of His Epiphany to us.
Except for Easter and Pentecost, the Solemnity of the Epiphany is the oldest of all Christian festivals, one that originated in the Eastern Churches….Epiphany means to reveal, show or manifest; Christ is revealed….
The feast initially celebrated four events in Christ’s life, events that manifested his royal kingship: the Nativity, the visit of the Magi, the baptism in the Jordan and the wedding at Cana….
No matter when or where celebrated, this feast calls us to manifest the glory of Jesus by a holy life, and the way we work, pray and worship (D.D. Emmons, Our Sunday Visitor, 1/2/2019).
My wife and I were blessed to be part of a Holy Land Pilgrimage in 2017. The location believed to be the site of Jesus’s baptism by His cousin John appeared far different in reality, than it had in my imagination! It was a remarkably humble site. The Jordan River is quite narrow at the Baptismal site, though it constitutes an international border with the nation of Jordan.
As per the Compendium of the Catechism,
The one who is baptized is immersed into the death of Christ and rises with Him as a “new creature” (2 Corinthians 5:17)….
In the Old Covenant Baptism was pre-figured in various ways: water, seen as source of life and of death; in the Ark of Noah, which saved by means of water; in the passing through the Red Sea, which liberated Israel from Egyptian slavery; in the crossing of the Jordan River, that brought Israel into the promised land…the image of eternal life….
At the beginning of His public life Jesus had Himself baptized by John the Baptist in the Jordan. On the cross, blood and water, signs of Baptism and the Eucharist, flowed from His pierced side. After His Resurrection He gave to His apostles this mission: “Go forth and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19)…..
Baptism is necessary for salvation for all those to whom the Gospel has been proclaimed and who have had the possibility of asking for this sacrament….
Baptism takes away original sin, all personal sins and all punishment due to sin. It makes the baptized person a participant in the divine life of the Trinity through sanctifying grace, the grace of justification which incorporates one into Christ and into his Church. It gives one a share in the priesthood of Christ and provides the basis for communion with all Christians. It bestows the theological virtues and the gifts of the Holy Spirit. A baptized person belongs forever to Christ. He is marked with the indelible seal of Christ (character)