Baptism

Dear Parents and God Parents,
We are happy that you have chosen to have your child baptized at St. Martha. The essential requirement for Baptism is that at least one parent commits to raising the child in the Catholic faith by practicing and attending Mass. There must be a founded hope that the infant/ children will be brought up in the Catholic religion.

Baptism for children seven (7) years and older:
Children 7 years and older must be enrolled in our Religious Education program in order to be baptized.

Baptism for infants (age 1 and under) and children (1 to 6 years old):
Parents who wish to baptize their infant and children 1 to 6 years old should follow the instructions below. We will be glad to assist you.

Emergencies:
An infant or child in danger of death is to be baptized without delay. Please contact the office.

Through baptism men and women are freed from sin, are reborn as children of God, and, configured to Christ by an indelible character, and thus are incorporated into the Church.

Baptism Policies For Infants And Children 1 To 6 Years Old

The followed documentation should be brought to the Parish Office at least TWO WEEKS before the Baptism. Otherwise, your child’s baptism may be postponed to the next available Baptism celebration date at the parish.

When all requirements are satisfied, the date for the Baptism will be assigned at least two weeks before the Baptism.There is no charge or fee for Baptism, however there is a suggested contribution of $100. This donation is at your discretion and should be paid once all the documentation is in order.

Observations

  • It is traditional to dress your child in white.
  • Children through the history have been given a saint name or one from the bible.
  • If one of the natural parents plans not to attend the ceremony, then that parent should give notarized permission for the baptism especially if they are recognized as the parent on the birth certificate. Cases of disputed custody should be discussed with the priest.
  • If parents have not been married in the Catholic Church, they are strongly encourage to discuss marriage or convalidation with the priest.

Documentation required:

Below is a checklist to assist you with the requirements.

Checklist for Parents

  • Properly completed Baptism form.
  • Copy of child’s Birth Certificate.
  • Certificate that parents attended the baptismal preparation class.
  • If parents are non-parishioners, attach the permission letter from the church they attend.
  • If parent are parishioners, Family Number should be included in the application.
  • If divorced or absent parent, attach a letter giving permission to baptize the child.

Checklist for Godparents

  • Certificate that Godparent(s) attended the baptismal preparation class.
  • If Godparents are non-parishioners or do not live within the boundaries of St. Martha, attach the permission letter from the church they attend indicating:
    • They are active members, and
    • They are eligible to be godparents.
  • If Godparents are parishioners, their parishioner family number should be included in the application.
  • The Godparent should qualify according the Church’s Canon Law (See below)

Who can be a Godparent?

The responsibility of a Godparent is to help the baptized person lead a good Catholic life. The Godparents promise to be an example in their own life and lead a Christian life that reflects the spirit and teachings of our Catholic Religion.

  • The godparent is at least 16 years old.
  • He/she has received the sacraments of Baptism, First Communion, and Confirmation. Proof may be asked in the form of sacramental certificates.
  • If married, has to be not only civil married, but also married by the Catholic Church.
  • The godparent has to lead a life of faith. Regularly attend Sunday Mass and receive Holy Communion and Confession frequently.
  • The Godparent must not be bound by any canonical or church penalty.
  • There is to be only one male sponsor or one female sponsor or one of each.
  • Any Godparent who is unable to attend the baptism, should have a proxy represent them at the celebration in their place. The name of the Godparent will appear on the child’s baptismal certificate. Proxys MUST meet the same requirements as the godparent.

Who cannot be a Godparent?

  • A non-baptized person may not act as a Godparent.
  • A single person who is not married, but cohabitating with someone is not permitted to serve as a godparent.
  • Cannot be the father or mother of the one to be baptized.
  • A baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community is not to participate except together with a Catholic sponsor and then only as a witness of the baptism.

For Baptism please visit the Parish Office.