To follow up with these, or any other questions, contact your local parish. The parish office staff will put you in touch with either the parish priest or another suitable person who will assist you in the process of your child’s Baptism.
What if I am not Catholic but my child’s father / mother is?
For sensible pastoral reasons, a child needs at least one Catholic parent to be baptised in a Catholic Church.
Who can be baptised in the Catholic Church?
Any child with a parent who has been baptised Catholic is able to be baptised in the Catholic Church.
Can you be baptised more than once?
Baptism into the Christian faith occurs only once.
I am no longer in communication with my child’s mother / father – do I need to get their permission to have our child baptised?
You need to discuss your situation with your local parish.
What if I am not married – am I still able to get my child baptised?
Of course! Baptism is about the child, not the parent’s circumstances. The Church’s hope is that parents are presenting their child with a desire to share their faith in God and to connect with the Church community. The Church focusses on the child, as well as the responsibilities of those who have guardianship of the child.
When should I have my child baptised?
You can have your baby or child baptised at any age although the Sacrament Policy (Archdiocese of Brisbane) suggests that this occurs within the first 12 months. Your local parish will be able to assist you with any questions you have.
My child is no longer a baby – can they still be baptised?
Baptism can occur at any age although preparation for this varies depending on your child’s age. Your parish will be able to assist you with this process.
What does it mean to have your child ‘baptised’?
Having your child baptised means that they are incorporated into the Body of Christ and have begun the process of initiation which will be completed through the sacraments of Confirmation and First Communion. Within the Baptism ritual parents promise to support and nurture their child’s Christian life.
What is the difference between Christening and Baptism?
There is no difference between Baptism and Christening. The Catholic Church recognises the first sacrament of initiation to be Baptism, which comes from a Greek word used in Scripture meaning to ‘plunge’ or immerse. ‘Christening’ is derived from Middle English and means to make Christian and is also connected with the term “Christ” which means “anointed one”. Therefore it is also connected to the “Chrismation” – or “anointing” – of the baptismal ceremony.
How do I choose a godparent and what do they do?
A godparent is to be 16 years or older and fully initiated into the Catholic Church, i.e. one who has been baptised and been Confirmed and celebrated First Communion. One godparent needs to be Catholic although practising individuals of other Christian traditions are welcome to be witnesses. Non-Christians are unable to be witnesses.
There is no legal obligation as a godparent. It is a ministry of love and a privilege to be invited. Godparents are chosen with the hope that they practise their faith regularly, and will be a positive spiritual guide and good moral mentor for the baptised child.
Why might there be several families celebrating Baptism at the same time?
Baptism is a communal celebration. It is not a private family occasion. Therefore Baptisms are normally conducted during Sunday Mass or might be celebrated with several other families at another time in the parish church.