Infant Baptism

Pre-Baptism Gathering:

Pre-baptismal preparations are needed to set a date for baptism. The sessions consist of 2 classes, both meetings are in the Bethlehem Room from 6:30 to 7:30 pm. The sessions are set monthly for the second and third Tuesday of the month.

To participate in the 2 classes that make up the session, please register with Chris Steffan at 232-2414 ext 127 or follow the registration instructions below.

It is also recommended that you are a parish member. You may register on-line, or over the phone, or by registration blank to become a parish member.

To Register for Pre-Baptism Gathering:

  1. Click on this link and print a form.
  2. Send the form to the parish office: Attn: Chris Steffan, 1825 11 St S Fargo ND 58103

Other Important Information:

Frequently Asked Questions

I was recently asked to be my niece’s godmother, and I am wondering if the responsibilities of godparents have changed since I was a child?

The Rite of Baptism for Children was promulgated in 1969. One of the purposes of the new rite was to express more clearly the role and responsibilities of the parents and godparents. The emphasis is on the role of parents as the primary educators in faith of their children. By their example, they will teach their children about God, about loving their neighbor, practicing the mysteries of the church and growing in their faith. Godparents are charged with helping the parents in their duties. Perhaps they best achieve this by being examples of faith, showing their godchild by word and deed what it means to be a practicing Catholic. As the child grows older, this is especially important; and your attendance/participation at first penance and first Communion, confirmation and other church related activities makes a big impression.
The rite has changed, but the responsibility of the godparents has essentially remained the same. In short, you are to support the parents, give good example and be a model of faith for the young soul entrusted to your care.

©2009 Liturgical Publications Inc

 

At my grandson’s baptism, the priest put a bib on the baby. I do not remember seeing this before. Why is this done? Is it something new?

When adults are baptized, there is a part in the ceremony when the newly baptized are vested in a white garment. It is symbolic of the changes that baptism brings in the life of the baptized as they are freed from the bonds of sin and brought into the saving grace of Christ. Realities that are so profound are symbolically presented so that we might better grasp and understand them.
Infants are often dressed in a baptismal dress, which is the baptismal garment. In some places, the bib is used as a kind of baptismal garment. At the place in the ceremony where the investiture takes place, the bib is used. Some are poncho-like and fit over the baby’s head. Others are simply placed on the baby’s chest. If the baby is dressed in a white garment, nothing else is needed. The prayer says it all: “See in your white garment the outward sign of your Christian dignity…bring that dignity unstained into the everlasting life of heaven.” In baptism, we are given our purpose and goal in life as believers and this is symbolized by the white garment.

©2009 Liturgical Publications Inc

 

 

 

I have two questions about baptism. First, is there such a thing as getting unbaptized? Secondly, can you change godparents?

In order to be “unbaptized,” you would need the power to change the past. We all know that once something is done, it cannot be undone. Its effects might be nullified, or minimized, but the event itself remains. A few months ago, there was an effort on the part of some Italians who were not happy with the church to be “unbaptized.” The Italian bishops outlined a procedure whereby, upon request, priests in Italy could note in the baptismal registry those adults who wish to leave the Roman Catholic Church. While 98% of Italians are baptized Catholic, only 36% attend Mass regularly and over 14% never attend at all. There are bound to be some who are Catholic in
name only.
The same idea can be applied to godparents, whose role is to assist parents in raising children in faith. Once a choice is made, it cannot be undone. If a godparent falls short of your expectations, you can always focus your attention on the person you choose as the sponsor for confirmation.

©2009 Liturgical Publications Inc

 

 

My best friend is Lutheran and is a good Christian. I would like her to be my child’s sponsor, but I’m wondering, does she have to be a practicing Catholic?

The practice of two godparents for an infant’s baptism goes back to the time when church law and civil law were one and the same in Europe. If anything did happen to the parents, the custody and well-being of the child became the responsibility of the godparents. Adult baptism required that one have a sponsor from the church who would act as a guide or mentor, in bringing the person to faith.
Today, being a godparent has no legal implications. It is a spiritual matter. But at least one of the godparents must be a practicing Catholic. The other is called a Christian witness. This distinction recognizes the difference between faith and religion. A Christian can be a witness because of their relationship to God (faith), but the Catholic is a mentor in the practice of the religion.
In any event, it is vital that parents give serious consideration to the people they choose to be a child’s godparents. That choice should be based on practice of faith, solid moral character and ability to give good example. Too often the choice is left to whose turn it is in the family, or to friends that parents wish to honor or acknowledge in some way. Your choice of godparents is the first lesson of faith you teach your child. Make it count!

©2009 Liturgical Publications Inc

Used with permission

What is a sacramental seal and where did it come from?

Leaving more than just a memory, there are some events in our life that are truly transforming, making us different people. The same thing can be said of spiritual things, especially sacraments. A sacramental seal or character is a theological concept to describe the life-changing and permanent effect of three sacraments on the person: baptism, confirmation, and holy orders. The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that these sacraments confer a seal “by which the Christian shares in Christ’s priesthood and is made a member of the Church according to different states and functions. This configuration to Christ and the Church, brought about by the Spirit, is indelible” (#1121).

Once we receive these sacraments, we are forever changed. It’s a spiritual “point of no return” whereby we take a step forward in our faith journey. We are marked as people of faith, as those who have received the Spirit and as those called to serve in ordained ministry. That is why these sacraments are received only once. The direction is set, the choice is made, and we are called by God to be his people. Nothing can change that, not even our own sinfulness.

© 2010 Liturgical Publications Inc Used with permission

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