The sacrament of baptism ushers us into the divine life, cleanses us from sin, and initiates us as members of the Christian community. It is the foundation for the sacramental life.
At baptism, the presider prays over the water:
Father, look now with love upon your Church, and unseal for her the fountain of baptism. By the power of the Holy Spirit give to this water the grace of your Son, so that in the sacrament of baptism all those whom you have created in your likeness may be cleansed from sin and rise to a new birth of innocence by water and the Holy Spirit. (Christian Initiation of Adults, #222A)
Freed from Sin
Baptism frees us from the bondage of original and actual sin. Water is poured in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Today, the sacrament of baptism is often performed on infants, shortly after birth. Adult baptisms take place at the Easter Vigil through the restored Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults. Adults or children who have been baptized in a valid Christian church are not baptized again in the Catholic church. As we say in the Nicene Creed, “I confess one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins…”
The Catechism teaches:
"The fruit of Baptism, or baptismal grace, is a rich reality that includes forgiveness of original sin and all personal sins, birth into the new life by which man becomes an adoptive son of the Father, a member of Christ and a temple of the Holy Spirit. By this very fact the person baptized is incorporated into the Church, the Body of Christ, and made a sharer in the priesthood of Christ" (CCC 1279).
- Water – The waters of baptism recall Jesus’ own baptism by John the Baptist in the river Jordan. Water is a symbol of cleansing and renewal as we begin a new life in Christ. We are washed clean of sin.
- Oil – At baptism we are anointed into the life of Christ as “priest, prophet and king.” A cross is traced on the candidate’s forehead as are reminder that we are inheritors of the Kingdom of God.
- Light – The baptismal candle is lit from the Paschal or Easter candle that stands in the church as a sign of Christ’s light in the world. At baptism, we receive the light of Christ and are called forth to share this light with the world.
- White garment – The white garment that is placed upon us at baptism is a symbol of Christ’s victory over death and his glorious resurrection. Likewise, the white garment or pall that is placed over the coffin at the time of death recalls our baptismal promises and reminds us that we are destined for eternal life.
While in ordinary circumstances, sacraments in the Catholic Church are administered validly by a member of the ordained clergy, in an emergency situation, the sacrament of baptism can be administered by anyone.
In case of necessity, any person can baptize provided that he have the intention of doing that which the Church does and provided that he pour water on the candidates head while saying: “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit" (CCC 1284).
Amen, amen, I say to you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit. (John 3:5)
The church celebrates with you on this important occasion. Except for the Season of Lent when no Baptisms are held, Baptisms are celebrated of the first and third Sundays of each month at 1:00 pm.
Infant Baptism Preparation Sessions
Most people select a godmother and godfather, although the Church says that one sponsor is sufficient. The Church asks that the godparents be at least 16 years old and baptized and confirmed Catholics who attends Mass and receives Eucharist regularly. First-time parents are required, and first-time godparents are strongly encouraged, to attend a baptism parent preparation class prior to the baptism date. This session, required by Church law, provides catechetical instruction and prepares everyone for their role in the development of the faith of the child, as well as practical information on the actual Baptism ceremony. These sessions are held in the conference room in the Parish Office, on the second Monday of the month at
7:00 p.m. and the fourth Sunday of the month at 2:00 p.m. First-time parents are required to attend the class and godparents are welcomed and encouraged to attend. You are welcome to bring your infant to the class.
To schedule a baptism and/or register for a Parent preparation session, call the Parish Office at 312-642-2498 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.