Children over 7 years of age and Adults:
Canon Law, the universal law of the Church requires that a person over the age of 7 must, at their baptism, also receive First Communion and Confirmation. In other words, they will be fully initiated into the life of the Church in one service. For these sacraments to be meaningful, a great deal of preparation is required. We do our best to work with individual situations to provide quality preparation for everyone. Because circumstances and backgrounds vary widely, we ask for an initial face-to-face meeting to learn about the person to be baptized and to determine the best option. Please contact Lisa, our Faith Formation Director at 727-541-4447 or firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an appointment.
Children under 7 years of age:
We happily welcome parents who wish to have their child baptized here at Sacred Heart! Baptism is the first of the Church’s sacraments. By being baptized, we are incorporated into the Body of Christ. The Apostle Paul expressed it this way, “Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body (1 Cor. 12:12-13a). So, having your child baptized is amazingly important!
Baptism can also be meaningful experience for parents or guardians – something more than just a gathering of family members. We hope that the preparation class you attend and the few additional things that need to be done will help make the baptism of your child a significant moment in their life and yours.
Use this link to download the instructions and form you’ll need to arrange the baptism. We appreciate your cooperation and look forward to the celebration of this sacrament with you.
What needs to be done:
Baptism Registration Form
Please fill in the Baptism Registration Form (link above). This gives us the information we need to record the sacrament in the parish records. If you are not already registered here at Sacred Heart, and would like to do so, you can complete the second half of the form. We will happily welcome you to our parish family!
An additional (and important) note about parish registration: If you live within the boundaries of our parish you do not need to formally register to have your child baptized. We would very much like you to register, but we leave that choice to you. If, on the other hand, you live closer to another parish, you should request baptism there. Families that live outside our boundaries should only request baptism for their child at Sacred Heart if they have been registered and attending our parish for some time.
Permission to Baptize the Child in the Catholic Faith
We need the permission of both parents (or guardians) to baptize the child but realize that this is complicated by divorce and other custody situations. If both parents will not be at the baptism, we can assess your circumstances and decide how best to proceed. In some cases, we’ll need additional documentation.
We are required by our Diocese to have a copy of the child’s birth certificate.
Culturally, godparents are often picked because of family connections or as a way of honoring the person chosen. The Church, however, requires that at least one godparent be a Catholic, who has received the sacraments of Eucharist and Confirmation, is striving to live out their faith, and is willing to assist the parents / guardians in passing on the Catholic faith to the child. The Church recognizes and allows one male and one female godparent for each child. A godparent and a “Christian Witness” – a person who practices another Christian tradition – is also acceptable.
We ask each of the Catholic godparents for a letter from their parish stating that they are a member of that parish and eligible to be a godparent. If a Christian Witness, they will need to complete a Christian Witness Form.
Baptism Preparation Class
Parents must attend a Baptism Preparation Class prior to the baptism. These are offered once each month. The class will help you deepen your understanding of the sacrament as well as review what you’ll need to do on the day of the baptism. Contact Lisa, our Faith Formation Director at 727-541-4447 or email@example.com for upcoming dates.
Godparent Preparation Class
Godparents must attend a special preparation class prior to the baptism that will help them fulfill their role. These are generally offered once each month. The parish staff can give you the dates for the next few months. If the godparents do not live nearby, they may take a similar class offered at another parish and submit to us and letter or certificate from that parish. Contact Lisa, our Faith Formation Director at 727-541-4447 or firstname.lastname@example.org for upcoming dates.
Schedule the Baptism
The following paperwork must be received and classes scheduled before scheduling a Baptism date:
- Baptismal Registration form
- Copy of birth certificate – can be emailed to email@example.com
- Letter from Godparent’s church (if Catholic) or a completed Christian Witness Form
- Parent and Godparent class scheduled
There is no fee for the baptism. However, we hope you’ll consider an offering to assist the parish in its many ministries. Each day we offer the sacraments at the parish, in hospitals, and in homes. And, in keeping with Jesus’ commands, we assist the needy in our community, our diocese, and the world. None of this would be possible without the support of many. Please know that any gift of thanksgiving you provide will be greatly appreciated.
Please understand that, under no circumstances, can we administer the sacrament unless the paperwork listed above has been submitted and the parents and godparents have attended their respective sacramental preparation class.
For a copy of your Baptismal Certificate please submit the Sacramental Records Request Form online.
May God bless you and your family!