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Baptism of a Child

So, you are interested in getting your baby or child baptized at Holy Family! We would love to share in that special day with you. Once you call us or talk to us, we will set up an appointment with our Priest to talk about what is involved when you celebrate the Sacrament of Baptism with us. What are some of the things you will discuss with the Priest?

Why do you want the baby or child baptized?
Is it family tradition? Is it pressure from a parent or grandparent? Is it a desire for a foundation on which the child will come to know about God? All of those? None of those? Something else? The crucial part of that conversation is that there are no right or wrong answers; there are only honest answers.

What if you haven’t been to Mass in quite a while or haven’t been a practicing Catholic?

Would that prevent you from having your child baptized? The answer is yes and no. Here is why.

There is so much to experience when one says “I am a Catholic”. There are 2000 years of history that one becomes part of when one is baptized. There are liturgies, rituals and prayers that provide comfort and a way to worship. There is a worldwide catholic community of which one is instantly a member, and much closer to home, a parish community that is there to support and spiritually nurture one another. If you haven’t experienced belonging to a parish community in a while, God may be calling you to a new and deeper spirituality through your child’s baptism. If I were to baptize the baby to fulfill some family obligation, and then let you go back into oblivion, we would be letting you miss out on praying with a prayer community.

If you haven’t been to Mass in awhile and choose to have your baby or child baptized at Holy Family, we want and expect you to become an active member of our community. That means attending Mass and participating in the life of our community. What can you expect in return? You can expect the people at Holy Family to be happy to see you when you attend Mass, and miss you when you aren’t able to attend. You are assured of people willing to listen; you are assured of being able to ask any questions; you are assured of being able to be your authentic self, the person whom God intended you to be. 

With all of the preliminary things out of the way, a date will be set for the baptism. Your baby will be baptized during Mass. Your child will become a member of our community. We want to meet and pray for your child during the baptismal liturgy!

Some people don’t want that kind of attention on them and would rather celebrate the sacrament after Mass.  Not many people would think of getting married in an empty church after a Sunday Mass. Priest ordinations don’t take place after Mass. First Communions, Confirmations all take place in the midst of community with proud parents and grandparents and sponsors beaming with pride.  Sacraments have an effect on the community. When we witness baptisms, we recall the baptisms of other family members and friends. We see that the faith we love is being carried on. We watch the pride and love the new parents have for the baby. The community realizes its own growth and can see in a very concrete way that the community they are part of and have helped form is attracting new members. The community needs to experience the baptism to recall the good works God is working in their lives.

What if you decide you aren’t ready for such involvement? I wouldn’t baptize your baby at this time. I would ask permission to contact you in a month or so to see if anything had changed, and I would continue to keep in touch with you. The Church gives one the foundation to build a close relationship with God. Pouring the water and saying the prayers gets the job of Baptism done. But to miss out on all the grace that splashes up on everyone when the sacrament is celebrated, and not continue to be part of the joy of belonging to a prayer community, would be a travesty of outlandish proportions!

Adult Baptism

What if you know an adult who wants to be baptized, or what if it is you who wants to be baptized? We do that too! In fact, that is Rev. Mary’s specialty. For over twenty years she worked with adults who wanted to become Catholic. . There is more involved with an adult wanting to be baptized, and oh! it is a wonderful journey! Please call or contact the Pastor, and we will get the wheels in motion!