We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of Life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son. With the Father and the Son he is worshipped and glorified. He has spoken through the prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen.
This last section of the creed focuses first on the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Blessed Trinity and is the one who animates our life. The Spirit comes from the Father and the Son out of the great love they have, not only for each other but for all of us. Since all three are equal all are given praise and worship.
The next statement reminds us that our Church did not simply appear one day; it is founded on the apostles whom Jesus gathered around him during his three years of ministry. He said, “Come after me” (Mt: 4:19) and then told Peter “upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it” (Mt 16: 18). Our Church is alive because if has living foundation.
Baptism is received only once, no matter in what religious denomination, as long as it is done with water and in the name of the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit. If a person has already been baptized in this manner, they are not re-baptized when they convert to Catholicism. Instead, they make a “profession of faith.”
And finally, we remind ourselves that at some point in time, all the dead shall be resurrected and live forever, hopefully, with God in heaven.
The Creed is a summation of our faith. It explains, briefly, all that we as Catholic hold to be true in our faith. Each Sunday as we pray this ancient prayer together let us recall what unites us and gives us a firm foundation.
For more information see the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Part 1, Section 2, Chapter 3 or online at http://www.usccb.org/catechism/text/pt1sect2chpt3ind.shtml