THE CELEBRATION OF BAPTISM
Baptism, the gateway to the sacraments and necessary for salvation by actual reception or at least by desire, is validly conferred only by a washing of true water with the proper form of words. Through baptism men and women are freed from sin, are reborn as children of God, and, configured to Christ by an indelible character, are incorporated into the Church. (Can. 849)
Requirements according to the Law of the Catholic Church (Canon Law 849-878):
1. Parents and godparents are to be instructed properly on the meaning of this sacrament and the obligations attached to it. (Ask for an appointment for the catechesis)
2. For an infant to be baptized licitly:
a. The parents or at least one of them or the person who legitimately takes their place must consent.
b. There must be a founded hope that the infant will be brought up in the Catholic religion; if such hope is altogether lacking, the baptism is to be delayed according to the prescripts of particular law after the parents have been advised about the reason.
Sponsors / Godparents
A person to be baptized is to be given a sponsor who assists an adult in Christian initiation or together with the parents presents an infant for baptism. A sponsor also helps the baptized person to lead a Christian life in keeping with baptism and to fulfill faithfully the obligations inherent in it.
3. There is to be only one male sponsor or one female sponsor or one of each. (Can. 873)
4. To be permitted to take on the function of sponsor a person must:
a. Be designated by the one to be baptized, by the parents or the person who takes their place, or in their absence by the pastor or minister and have the aptitude and intention of fulfilling this function.
b. Have completed the sixteenth year of age.
c. Be a Catholic who has been confirmed and has already received the most holy sacrament of the Eucharist and who leads a life of faith in keeping with the function to be taken on.
d. The sponsors must be in full communion with the Church.
i. the sponsor or sponsors must be single or married. (A person or couple who cohabitate without being married cannot be sponsor).
ii. Have the sacraments. (Baptism, Communion, and Confirmation)
iii. Assist to Mass constantly.
e. Not be the father or mother of the one to be baptized.
For baptism of children in Grades 1 through 8, please call the rectory to make arrangements for the Children’s Catechumen Program. This program will vary depending on the age and faith development of the child.
For baptisms of people grade 9 to Adult, refer to RCIA.