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 and daughters of God. We become members of Christ and are incorporated into the Church, as we are made sharers in her divine mission. Baptism is the “sacrament of regeneration” through water and in the word (CCC 1213).
The Church definitively teaches the baptism is necessary for salvation. Parents have the obligation of baptizing their children, and should strive to do so in the first few weeks after birth, if possible (can. 867 §1). There should always be the founded hope that the child to be baptized will be raised in the Catholic faith. Because of this great responsibility and duty, we are here to help you.
At St. Francis, we are here to walk with you as you prepare your children for this sacrament. As parents, you are the first teachers of your children in the faith. Likewise, sponsors (godparents) have an equal shared responsibility in giving a good example and helping the children to be raised in the Catholic faith. We strive to help you prepare for the Sacrament of Baptism through a baptismal preparatory class before the celebration of the Sacrament itself.
At St. Francis, Baptisms are celebrated on the first Sunday of the month following the 11:30 a.m. Mass at 1:00 p.m. Parents should call the rectory to plan a day for the baptism in advance.
Baptism Preparatory Class
Parents should call the parish office to schedule the baptism before the birth of their child or immediately thereafter. The baptism preparatory class normally meets the Thursday before the baptism at 6pm. Please call the parish office at 434-1878 for more information. Parents and godparents are required to attend this class.
What about sponsors (godparents)?
Sponsors have the great responsibility of assisting parents in raising their children in the Catholic faith. As such, they must be examples of what it means to be a good Christian in full communion with the Catholic Church. Only one sponsor is required. A child may have two sponsors (one male and one female), so long as he/she is:
over the age of 16
a Catholic who has received the Sacraments of First Holy Communion and Confirmation.
registered and active members of their parish.
living in conformity with Catholic morals and in good standing with the Catholic Church (if married, married according to the laws of the Church).
may not be the mother or father of the person to be baptized.
Finally, they must obtain a Sponsor Certificate, attesting to their fulfilling the stated requirements, from the parish in which they are a registered member.
Before asking someone to take on the role of a sponsor, please be sure they fulfill the requirements of the Church.