Texas Gov. Rick Perry was baptized in a creek last month during a ceremony observed only by close friends and family — a personal action he took to “reaffirm his commitment” to the Christian faith, according to a spokesperson.

The governor was dunked under the water in the Little Rocky Creek outside Independence, Texas — the same body of water where Sam Houston, the state’s 7th governor, was also baptized in 1854.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry makes a point as he speaks to the members of the media after meeting with business owners Wednesday, April 23, 2014, at a barbecue restaurant in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

“Gov. Perry has a deep and abiding faith in God,” said Perry spokesman Felix Browne in a statement. “Like many people of faith, the governor wished to reaffirm his commitment in a way that holds great personal meaning.”

Little Rocky Creek has been used to perform baptisms by Independence Baptist Church, a local house of worship, for quite some time. But it was Pastor Mac Richard of Lake Hills Church in Austin, Texas, who presided over Perry’s re-dedication.

In being baptized in the creek, the governor followed in the footsteps of Houston, who was the first elected president of the Republic of Texas in 1839. He was also a U.S. senator and later became governor.

Houston was baptized in the creek at the urging of his Baptist wife, the Texas Tribune reported.

Perry’s very personal and non-public act follows years of the governor’s open proclamations about his Christian faith, including his involvement in “The Response,” a massive public prayer event in 2011.

Read more about the baptism here.

(H/T: Texas Tribune)