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Congratulations! You've had a Baby!

If you're reading this, you probably have a new baby in the family.

Congratulations! We are very happy for you. Be assured of our prayers for your family.

We're also delighted you are thinking of baptism.

If you aren't a regular church-goer, getting your child baptised can be more complicated than you may have imagined.

You'll find lots of helpful information here. Keep reading. 

Don't Panic!

Reading this page may make you panic.

Please don't be alarmed. We are here to help you.

We want to do all we can to ensure your baby's baptism is honoured as a special moment for your family and the whole Church.

We know you desire the same.

What is Baptism (Christening)?

Baptism (which some people call Christening) is the first stage of Christian initiation. It is the Sacrament by which we share in the redemption offered by Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

When we are baptised, we join the community of Faith, which is the Church, and we are incorporated into the life of Christ – the eternal life of the Risen Christ.

For these reasons, choosing to have your child baptised is taken very seriously.

Please read this information carefully and get in touch if we can help you further.

How do I get my Child Baptised?

Do I Have to Come to Church?

It is a good start! More importantly, it is a positive sign that faith will be passed on to your child.

When parents ask to have their child baptised, they express a desire to pass on the Catholic faith to their child.

For this reason, it is important that at least one parent regularly attends one of the churches in our family of parishes.

When the baptism takes place, parents promise their child they will raise him/her as a person of faith and part of a worshipping community. This promise cannot be passed on to a school, grandparents or anyone else.

Choosing a Catholic upbringing for your child is a lifelong commitment on your part. It can be difficult, and you will need the whole community's help.

Baptising your child is an expression of your own faith and Catholic way of life. 

You may feel inadequate or ill-prepared. For this reason, it is important to prepare for the baptism by suitable instruction. We have a compulsory Baptism preparation course lasting two sessions at the Cathedral.  

Frequently Asked Questions About Baptism

Who Can Be a Godparent? How Many Godparents Can I Choose?

Godparents assist the parents of a child as they present the child for baptism. They also help the baptised person live a Christian life and fulfil the obligations of it. This means being a Godparent is a lifelong commitment to another person's spiritual and physical well-being. Parents cannot be Godparents to their own children. Parents may have up to two Godparents, one male and one female.

To be a Godparent, a person must be:

I Am Not Catholic, Can My Child Be Baptised?

When parents ask for baptism for their child, it is usually because one of them, at least, is baptised. Sometimes, non-Catholic parents and unbaptised parents may wish for baptism for their children.

The parish priest has to ensure there is a founded hope that the child will be brought up in the Catholic religion. If such hope is altogether lacking, the baptism is to be delayed until the parish community and your family can be more certain that they have done all they can for the child who is to be baptised.

In other words, with you, the priest will want to explore why you seek baptism for your child and support you as much as possible. This will lead to an exploration of your own faith and encouragement for your own faith journey so that you may further support your child in the way you wish. He will help you put your own faith into practice in ways which support the spiritual life of your child. This can take quite some time.

Once again, don't be afraid, make an appointment and speak to your parish priest.

Can a Person be Baptised More than Once?

The Catholic tradition and many other Christian denominations stand united on Ephesians 4:4-6, which says: “There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope of your calling, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all.” So, once baptism (water in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) happens, it’s a once-and-for-all thing. You're covered if you move to a different part of the country, switch to another denomination, or convert to Catholicism. So, in most cases, the answer is: No.

I Can't Find Any Proof that I Am Baptised

Don't worry. If you were baptised as a baby, your parents will have a Baptism Certificate. If this is lost or they can't recall the details, the address of the family home when you were born will give a clue to the parish you may have been baptised in. They will have a record of the baptism. If they don't and you're not sure you were baptised Catholic, you may wish to try the corresponding Anglican church.

What Should I Do in an Emergency?