Baptism is one of the Seven Sacraments of the Catholic Church and is the gateway to the rest of the sacraments. Baptism, Eucharist and Confirmation together constitute the “sacraments of Christian initiation” (CCC1213; 1285; Compendium No 250)
Biblical Roots of the Sacrament [CCC1213-1284]
The great flood Genesis 7 vs 1-13); The Israel crossing the Red Sea (Exodus 14 vs 15-22) Israel crossing the Jordan river to the promised land (Joshua 3 vs 14-17) At the beginning of Jesus’ public ministry, he was baptized by John in the Jordan river (Mathew 3: 13-17). In stepping into the River Jordan, Jesus filled the waters with his divine presence just as he does when the water is blessed during sacrament of Baptism.
Effects of Baptism:[ccc 1262-1280]
All sin is wiped away
For infant, this means original sin, for children over the “age of reason” (seven years) and adults, this means both original and personal sin.
We become adopted Children of God
Through baptism we become royalty; we are transformed into children of God. We are taken into the household of God and share in God’s divine life. We become temples of the Holy Spirit.
We are initiated into the Church
Through Baptism, we become members of the Church, the Body of Christ. We share in the priesthood of Christ as well as in this prophetic and royal mission. “You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people of his own, so that you may announce the praise of him who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light (1Peter 2:9)
We bond with other Christians
Through Baptism, we share a common bond with all who have been baptized into the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
“Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as children of God; we become members of the mystical body of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission”
(CCC No. 1213)
Guidelines to Infant Baptism
Why does the Church baptize infants?
May a child be baptized if only one parent request it?
How long after the birth of a child should the baptism take place?
Can our child be baptized even if we are not practising Catholics?
Parents who are not practising members of the Catholic Church may be asked to delay the Baptism of their child until the child is old enough to go through catechesis.
Who can be Godparent/sponsor?
The person should be an active practising catholic, not less than 16 years of age and is confirmed and receives Holy Communion. [Code of Can. 872-874]
A firm believer, someone who treasurers the catholic faith, [CCC No. 1255]
A God parent should someone who is able to give her/his God child the most important give – Faith.
What does a Godparent Do?
First of all to protect the church by authenticating the sincerity of the convert.
Secondly as a catechist, he/she supported the person as candidate into the church.
Assume perpetual guardianship over baptized and instruct them in the obligations of the Christian life.
To ensure fulfilment of baptismal vows.
Obligation to evangelize (live by word and example).
What are dates of baptism at the Sacred Heart Cathedral?
Infant Baptisms: are celebrated quarterly throughout the year.
Adult Baptism: Once a year at Easter Vigil.
Source of Information
Catechism of the Catholic Church [1211-1280]
Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church [Nos: 250-254]
Code of Canon Law [849-878]
Cathedral of the Sacred Heart
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