“As many of you as were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.”
Baptism - FAQs
If you are not a registered member of Cathedral parish, a simple letter granting permission from the pastor of your parish must be provided to the Cathedral secretary before the date of your child’s Baptism.
The Cathedral invites new parents to meet with a priest or deacon prior to the Baptism of their child to discuss the nature of the Sacrament and your role as Christian parents. This meeting is scheduled at your convenience before the date of baptism.
If you have already had a child baptized in the Catholic faith, you are not required to attend more than one Baptism preparation class.
The only requirements for a child to be baptized are parental consent and a reasonable hope that the child will be brought up in the Catholic faith. Thus, it is not a requirement for the parents of the child to be married in the Church.
Nevertheless, parents have a unique and essential role in the work of sanctifying their child by their active participation in the life of the Church. Parents have a special duty to witness to the faith in the whole of their lives, including by leading a conjugal life in a Christian spirit and by seeing to the Christian education of their children.
If parents are interested in rectifying or regularizing their marital situation, they should speak to the priest preparing them to discuss how this might be done.
Although the Church encourages choosing a Christian name for your children, it is not a requirement to have your child baptized in the Catholic faith. However, in accord with the law of the Church, the name may not be contrary to Christian sensibilities.
The Church asks that, insofar as possible, a person should be given a sponsor that will assist them in leading a Christian life. This sponsor, or godparent, can be male or female. The Church does allow for the parents to choose two godparents, so long as one is male and one is female, paralleling the natural complementarity of the parents.
The requirements for a godparent are that they be a confirmed and practicing Catholic who is at least 16 years of age, chosen by the parents and with the ability to fulfill the role. A non-Catholic may be chosen as a Christian witness, but must be accompanied by a Catholic godparent.
In the event that a godparent is unable to attend the actual baptismal ceremony, a proxy can be designated to witness the child’s Baptism on their behalf.
Because of the connection that the Sacrament of Baptism has with the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Christ, the Church prefers that a Baptism be celebrated on Sunday, the day on which the Church celebrates the Lord’s Resurrection. Ideally, the Baptism is celebrated in the presence of the whole community of the faithful, or at least a congregation of relatives, friends, and neighbors—all of whom take an active part in the rite.
On account of the close relationship between Baptism and Eucharist, the Church even allows that Baptisms may be celebrated within the context of the Sunday celebration of Mass.
At the Cathedral, we traditionally offer the celebration of the Sacrament of Baptism during or after the 4pm Saturday Mass and the 10am Sunday Mass. If for pastoral reasons another time is desired, please contact the priest or deacon coordinating your child’s Baptism.
The Church intends this to be a celebration of the entire Christian community—so bring yourselves, your child, and as many friends and family as you desire to invite!
Everything else will be provided by the Church: the candle, a small white garment, and a Certificate of Baptism. Many choose to dress their children in a white garment in anticipation of the baptismal celebration. In the event that you desire a special candle, please present this to the celebrant before the celebration.
The Church takes seriously the role of godparents in the life of the child, and as such, godparents cannot be “changed” after the Baptism has been celebrated.
As well, because of the close relationship between Baptism and Confirmation, it is desirous to have the godparent perform the duty of sponsor for Confirmation as well, wherever possible. Nevertheless, another sponsor may be chosen in the place of a godparent for the Sacrament of Confirmation.
The Cathedral parish does not require the godparents to attend the baptismal preparation class; nevertheless, to better understand their role in the Christian life of the child to be baptized, they are encouraged to attend if they are willing.
The Cathedral permits the use of photography during the celebration of Baptism, so long as it does not impede the celebration of the Sacrament. Please designate one person, if possible, so as to maintain the dignity of the rite.
Anyone designated by the parents can hold the child, but it is the duty of the mother and father (along with the godparents) to present the child for Baptism. The rite instructs “someone from the family (such as the father or godfather)” to light the baptismal candle.
Baptismal records, as well as the record of any subsequent sacrament received) are normally kept at the church where you were baptized. Copies of your baptismal certificate can be created upon request by the person (or their legal guardian) with whom they are concerned. If the church is now closed, please contact the diocesan offices to see where the records have been relocated.
The precepts of the Catholic Church are positive laws involving the moral and liturgical life of the individual, meant to ensure the individual’s growth in the love of God and neighbor.
The precepts are as follows:
- You shall attend Mass on Sundays and on holy days of obligation and rest from servile labor.
- You shall confess your sins at least once a year.
- You shall receive the Sacrament of the Eucharist at least once during the Easter Season.
- You shall observe the days of fasting and abstinence established by the Church.
- You shall help to provide for the needs of the Church.