(Catechesis of the Holy Father at the Wednesday General Audience).
THE SPIRITUAL EFFECTS of this sacrament, invisible to the eye but active in the heart of one who has become a new creature, are clearly seen in the consignment of the white garment and of the lighted candle.
The white garment, while symbolically expressing what has occurred in the sacrament, announces the condition of having been transfigured in divine glory. Saint Paul recalls what it means to be clothed in Christ, when he explains the virtues that the baptized must cultivate [in Colossians 3:12-14].
Even the ritual consignment of the flame drawn from the Easter candle, recalls the effect of Baptism: “Receive the light of Christ”, says the priest. These words recall that we are not the light, but rather, the light is Jesus Christ (cf. Jn 1:9; 12:46), who, Risen from the dead, overcame the shadows of evil. We are called to receive his splendor! As the flame of the Easter candle gives light to each single candle, so the love of the Risen Lord enflames the hearts of the baptized, filling them with light and warmth.
Christ’s living presence, which is to be safeguarded, defended and expanded in us, is the lamp which lights our steps, the light which directs our choices, the flame which warms hearts on the journey to encounter the Lord, making us capable of helping those who journey with us, until the inseparable communion with Him.