The Sacrament of Baptism
"Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you" (Mt 28:19-20)
Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as sons of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission: "Baptism is the sacrament of regeneration through water in the word." (CCC 1213)
Baptism is the introduction of a person into the Church community. Through the waters of Baptism the person enters into the life of God - Father, Son and Spirit. He or she is dedicated to God and all that is good.
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 pours water on the candidate's head while saying: "I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." (CCC 1284)
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)
It is good if the godparents can be adult Catholics who will take an interest in your baby as he or she grows up. In the early Church the godparents were sponsors who taught the new Christian, usually an adult, about the faith. Later on when infant baptism became usual, the godparents often took the role of guardians of the child if anything happened to the parents. Something of these two roles remains today. Choose godparents who are likely to be around and have an interest in your child over the years.
There must be at least one person who is a Catholic who has been confirmed and has received the Eucharist, and who lives a life worthy of the role that he or she is about to undertake and who is at least sixteen years old. It is permissible for a non-Catholic to act as witness to your child's baptism. But it is not possible for an unbaptized person to act as godparent or witness.
For more information about Godparents click to download the following information leaflet:
The Role of a Godparent (PDF 6.3KB)
Infant Baptism Schedule
Baptisms are held every Sunday at 11.30am in the Church.
Booking is essential. Please ring the parish office or speak to Fr Vince to book the date of your child/children’s baptism and to attend the Baptism Preparation Evening.
Download the following Baptism Request Form:
Baptismal Request Form (PDF 106.3KB)
If you are an adult who has not been baptised a Christian, but are thinking about becoming a Catholic, then the first step is to go to the local church and ask how they go about receiving people into the Church. Our church has a programme - the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (R.C.I.A.) which prepares people for baptism.
Joining the Community
When you ask for Baptism you are asking to become a member of the Catholic Church. You will be expected to take part in the life of that community on a regular basis. You will find people who are welcoming and friendly.
Committing your life to God
Baptism is the sacrament in which we commit ourselves to God. We proclaim our faith in God - Father, Son and Holy Spirit and we promise to avoid evil and to do good.
The baptism ceremony for adults is similar to baptism of children except that you make the baptismal promises yourself. Instead of godparents, adults have sponsors, whose role is to encourage you in the catholic faith. Traditionally adult baptisms take place during the ceremony of the Easter Vigil. In some parishes, therefore, you might be asked to wait for Easter for Baptism.
For more information on Adult Baptism in the Terrigal Parish please contact the parish office.