The Effects of the Sacrament of Baptism:

Baptism has six primary effects, which are all supernatural graces:

  1. The removal of the guilt of both Original Sin (the sin imparted to all mankind by the Fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden) and personal sin (the sins that we have committed ourselves).
  2. The remission of all punishment that we owe because of sin, both temporal (in this world and in Purgatory) and eternal (the punishment that we would suffer in hell).
  3. The infusion of grace in the form of sanctifying grace (the life of God within us); the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit; and the three theological virtues.
  4. Becoming a part of Christ.
  5. Becoming a part of the Church, which is the Mystical Body of Christ on earth.
  6. Enabling participation in the sacraments, the priesthood of all believers, and the growth in grace.
Infants 0-6 years

In the Catholic Church today, baptism is most commonly administered to infants. While some other Christians strenuously object to infant baptism, believing that baptism requires assent on the part of the person being baptized, the Eastern Orthodox, Anglicans, Lutherans, and other mainline Protestants also practice infant baptism, and there is evidence that it was practiced from the earliest days of the Church.

To register you must come to the Parish Office and:

  • Bring a copy of the birth certificate of the child.
  • Bring proof of confirmation for the godparents. (If they do not have certificates, they can request them from the Church where they received the sacrament.)
  • Pay the $30.00 fee to attend a baptismal class.
  • Registrations for baptism need to be done at the parish office at the latest by the Friday before class.
  • Both Parents ad Godparents must attend a Baptism class, this can be done either at St Catherine’s after you register or elsewhere (if you are coming from out of state), If taken elsewhere you must bring proof of this with you when you register.
Children 7-18 years

Children over the age of reason are required to follow the same requirements as adults before they can be baptized. Here at St Catherine’s we do this in conjunction with our first communion and confirmation classes.  These baptisms usually take place at the Easter Vigil.

Parents and Godparents of these children are asked to attend a baptism class before the baptism takes place.

Adults 18+ years

Adult converts to Catholicism also receive the sacrament, unless they have already received a Christian baptism. (If there is any doubt about whether an adult has already been baptized, the priest will perform a conditional baptism.) A person can only be baptized once as a Christian—if, say, he was baptized as a Lutheran, he cannot be re-baptized when he converts to Catholicism.

While an adult can be baptized after proper instruction in the Faith, adult baptism normally occurs today as part of the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) and is immediately followed by Confirmation and Communion.

Click here to learn more about RCIA.

Godparents

The godparents help their godson or goddaughter lead a Catholic life.  The godparents should help parents regularly by paying attention to their godson or goddaughter and helping parents bring up their children in the faith.

Godparents must be present at the baptism to profess their faith as a spiritual family and a representative of the Church to the boy or girl.  During the liturgy they must declare that they are prepared to assist parents in their duty as Christian parents.

A Godfather or Godmother must:
  • Be 16 or older.
  • Be a member of the Catholic Church.
  • Live a life that is in harmony with the faith of the Catholic Church and with the responsibility that they will be taking on.
  • Have received all three sacraments of initiation – Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist.
  • Not be a parent of the child.

Usually there are two Godparents for each child, though it is possible to have only one. Anyone who is Baptized Christian can stand in as a Christian Witness.  In any case though there must be at least on Godparent who is a full member of the Catholic Church. Note: only two names will be recorded on the baptismal certificate.  Godparents must be one man and one woman.

Baptismal Classes

There is a class for parents and godparents the second Tuesday of every month in English and the Second Thursday in Spanish at 7: 00 PM in the basement of the Church (MJC).  The class takes one hour and half to two hours.  You must register for the baptism at the parish office before the class.

No child will be baptized unless the parents and godparents have attended a class.

If you will be baptizing elsewhere and just need to attend a class the fee is $15, please come to the parish office to register and we will have your certificate ready when you attend the class.

Frequently asked Questions

  • Only one of the godparents must be a full member of the Catholic Church.  The second person must at the least be a baptized Christian and can then be a Christian Witness along with the Catholic Godparent.
  • Parents or godparents who have participated in classes in the last three years in another Parish do not need to take the class again.  We do ask that you bring proof with the date of class and the name of the parish where the class was taken.
  • Each child will receive a baptismal candle, but if you choose you can bring your own.
  • We encourage you to take pictures during the baptism – it is important that you keep a memory of this special day.