Our Lady of Lourdes Baptism
Congratulations on the birth of your baby! The community of Our Lady of Lourdes rejoices with you and your family. We are delighted that you have chosen our parish for your child’s Baptism. This is the first step in your child’s journey of faith. Therefore, we are committed to making the celebration of the sacrament of Baptism very special and meaningful for you and your family.
We are also committed to helping you in every possible way as you raise your child in the faith. The baptism of your child is a very important opportunity for you, the parents, to reaffirm your Catholic faith. By asking for baptism, you are stating and affirming that you will actively participate in the spiritual life and Catholic faith development of your child.
It is for this reason that we invite you to participate in Baptismal preparation at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish. We, in turn, will pray for God’s richest and choicest blessings for you and your family.
Baptisms are normally held by appointment on Sundays at 12:00 PM.
Hopefully, you will find the following information helpful in planning for your child’s Baptism. If you have any questions please call Kathy Benton at 508-866-4000 ext. 401.
Importance of Baptism
As you prepare for the sacrament of baptism for your child, you are presented with a unique opportunity to reaffirm your own Christian identity. On the strength of your own faith, you are asking the rest of the Church to welcome your child as a new member of this faith community. In doing so, you are making a promise to God, the Catholic Church and your own child that you
will do your very best to help develop the spiritual potential of your child and guide him/her to grow in the knowledge and love of Jesus and His Church.
Infant baptism is a right and a privilege for Catholic parents who not only love Jesus above all things but are also committed to living out that faith through, with and in the Church at large.
Baptism is the door and the key to the rest of the sacraments. As such, baptism is also the rite of initiation into the faith community and the beginning of a life-long commitment. It is the parents’ sole responsibility to ensure that their child is given every opportunity to become a follower of Jesus within the faith community.
Therefore, before we proceed with baptism, the Catholic Community of Our Lady of Lourdes requires some indication that you will take seriously the responsibilities found in infant baptism. We need assurance that the spiritual life that God gives your child at baptism will be fully nourished and cared for by you and this faith community of Our Lady of Lourdes.
Our Lady of Lourdes Baptism Program Overview
Our Baptism Program has four parts:
Step One-Initial Contact: We ask you to call the Parish Office at 508-866-4000 ext. 401. Some information will be taken about your newborn, the parents, and your desired baptismal date as well as to share information about our baptismal program. After the initial information, Deacon Paul Coughlin will contact you about a desired date for your Baptism.
Step Two-Choosing the Godparents: The selection of godparents is a critical choice in the baptism of your child. The role of the godparents is to help parents raise their child in the Catholic faith. As you prepare for your child’s baptism, you are invited to reflect on the role and selection of the godparents. Prior to inviting a relative or friend to assume the role of godparent, it is important that you understand what our church teaches regarding godparents:
- Ideally, godparents should be a man and a woman who have received all three sacraments of initiation (baptism, confirmation, and Eucharist)
- Godparents should be Catholics in good standing, enthusiastically living their faith and active participants in the life of the church.
- Godparents represent the Church as they promise, on behalf of the Church at large, to help parents in raising the child in our Catholic faith.
- Non-Catholic Christians may not be godparents but they may be “Christian witnesses.” There always must be one baptized and confirmed Catholic as godparent
If a godparent is not able to be present for the baptism, they may be represented by proxy. If you have questions or concerns about selecting a godparent, please call our Deacon or priest(s).
Step Three-Attend the Baptism Preparation Class: On the Friday evening prior to the day of the Baptism, a Baptism Preparation Class is held. The class is for both parents and godparents and takes place gathering space at 6:00 PM. Our Deacon seeks to prepare parents for their child’s baptism with a one-hour workshop that has the following goals:
- Welcome families to their faith community to share God’s infinite and unconditional love of them and their newborn. Educate parents about the history, meaning, and symbolism of the Sacrament of Baptism in the Catholic Church
- Acquaint the parents with the rituals of the baptismal ceremony itself.
- Encourage parents and godparents to be actively involved in their faith community
- Involve parents in a reflection of the presence of God in their lives.
Step Four-Attend the Rite of Baptism: The sacrament of Baptism takes place in the Church on the appointed date you have chosen. Everyone is welcome to this joy filled ceremony. The sacred rite takes about 1 hour.
Our Baptisms take place by appointment.
Baptism: What is it?
Baptism, the first and fundamental sacrament is the gate to the other sacraments. Baptism is the purifying and sanctifying sacrament of rebirth and the means by which its recipients are incorporated into the Church in a bond of unity.
Baptism is the first sacrament of Christian initiation. It is the sacrament that frees a person from original sin and makes that person a member of Christ and His Church, thus being the way to a new and spiritual life. It is administered by immersing the recipient in water or by pouring water on the person’s head “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”. One must be baptized before sharing in any of the other sacraments. Baptism is the foundation for all ministry and life in the church, and confers a commitment to follow Christ and spread his message throughout the world. Furthermore, in baptism, one is incorporated into the life, death, and resurrection of Christ, and thus participates in the gift of resurrection and eternal life with Christ.
Infants can be baptized soon after birth. At the time of baptism, parents vow to practice their faith and provide a Catholic upbringing for the child. Adults who have never been baptized take part in the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults), and will typically be baptized at the Easter Vigil. The Catholic Church recognizes baptisms from other Christian denominations that baptize in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Thus, a person can only be baptized once.