I can't remember if I read this somewhere or I sussed this on my own, but the parallelism in this scene is so well done - there is a literal baptism taking place at the exact same time Michael is being fully baptized into the Mafia family business.
Thanks for this great article, I haven't watched this in over 20 years, so was a great trip down memory lane. This film is so chockablock with icons - the horse's head, "leave the gun, take the cannoli," and nothing beats Brando. My favorite actor of all time. He really stuffed cotton balls in his mouth to get that voice and facial shape! To this day whenever I or someone's face is swollen like after a painful orthodontic procedure, I think to myself "Marlon Brando in The Godfather."
P.S. Well done on your (well Darth's) victory in the Thunderdome!