Are you expecting a baby? Do you have a child who you would like to have baptised? The parish runs a programme for parents of children who are preparing for baptism. It is on one Saturday afternoon, repeated a number of times through the year. These dates are usually shown on the Bulletin: the list closes a couple of weeks before each session to allow a prior home visit by our catechists. The Dates of the next sessions are shown on the Parish Bulletin (right)
Baptism usually takes place on Sundays (including Saturday Vigil Mass) during Mass or- according to preference- after a Sunday Morning Mass at either church. On a Sunday just before baptism, the child is welcomed into the community in a short liturgy at the beginning of a Mass. Godparents can take part in this, too.
Adult Baptism usually takes place through the Journey in Faith programme.
Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit, and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as children of God; we become members of Christ, and are incorporated into the Church.
Through these sacraments men and women are freed from the power of darkness. They receive the Spirit of adoption which make them God's sons and daughters and, with the entire people of God, they celebrate the memorial of the Lord's death and resurrection.
In Baptism we are formed into God's people, and obtain forgiveness of our sins. We become a new creation through water and the Holy Spirit- children of God.
Baptism - Frequently Asked Questions
How long after the birth of a child should the Baptism take place?
As soon as possible after the birth: parents should request the sacrament for their child and then arrange to attend the parish baptism programme.
Must we give our child the name of a saint?
No, but it is a good practice- to associate your child with someone you admire. Names from the Old Testament are also perfectly acceptable.
What are to requirements for being a godparent (sponsor) at Baptism?
The church’s law says:
• One sponsor must be Catholic.
• The Catholic must be at least 16 years old and baptized and confirmed
Can a baptized non-Catholic be a godparent?
Yes. They are known as a Christian witness. One godparent must be a Catholic. The Christian witness must be at least 16 years old.
What are the duties of parents and godparents?
In infant baptism the godparent, together with the parents, presents the child for baptism and helps the baptized to lead a Christian life. Church law says that there should be “a well founded hope that the child be brought up in the catholic religion” (Canon 868) and for this reason it is usual for parents to be practising Catholics and for parents (rather than other relatives) to present the child for baptism.
What if the godparent cannot be present for the Baptism?
If the godparent cannot be present in person- working abroad or in the forces for example- he or she may appoint another person to serve as a proxy for the time of their absence.
What do I need to bring with me to Baptism?
Just a white garment to place on your child's shoulders during baptism, or otherwise he/she should wear a white christening robe. We provide a candle- and use of a towel! There are baby changing facilities off the porch, and at the pre baptism session.