Congratulations and Thanks
Congratulations on the birth of your child! The Parish Community shares in your joy. Thank you for wanting to have your baby join the family of the Church through Baptism. By asking for your baby’s Baptism, you are publicly thanking God for His gift to you and making a commitment to bring up your child in the Christian faith. We will help you carry out your decision by giving you our wholehearted support.
Baptism Dates and Arrangements
Saturdays at 6pm. Sundays at 1pm or by appointment with Parish Priest
Baptism is an important moment in our faith journey; important for the child, the parents and the parish. At the start of the ceremony the priest says; ‘The Christian community welcomes you with great joy’
Traditionally when parents brought a child for Baptism, the only contact they had with the parish was the priest, Nowadays we know it is important the parents also get a sense of the wider parish – by meeting fellow parishioners – and that they have an opportunity to learn a little about the faith journey that they are committing to go on as a family.
Together we have developed a one hour meeting that covers three points.
- What the sacrament of Baptism is
- What will happen on the day of your Childs Baptism
- Practical information ( Godparents, forms, bringing up your child in faith, candles etc)
We will be offering this Information evening once a month, for all parents of children to be baptized.
When a parent wishes to have their child baptized in the parish of Abbeyfeale, they will as usual approach their Parish Priest or parish secretary. The time and location of your Childs Baptism will still be booked one to one with your priest. However, he will now invite parents to attend this monthly meeting (of just one hour) as part of their preparation for Baptism. At that meeting they will receive baptismal forms they need to fill in, they will hear information about their Childs Baptism, and they will meet other parents, like themselves, with children for Baptism and help guide the parents through the stages of Baptism
This small change will achieve three things;
- Parents will be better connected with the parish and have clear information about Baptism
- There will be a common policy for Baptism across our parishes, making it clear and easy for all.
- Parishioners will have the opportunity to support and appreciate our parents who are making this wonderful commitment to bringing up their children in the faith.
Book the weekend before the information evenings.
The Symbols Used in the Baptism Ceremony…
The Sign of the Cross:
A stamp or imprint on something is a sign of its origin or ownership. The sign of the cross which we make at the beginning of the ceremony on the child’s forehead, claims him/her for Christ.
In the Celebration of Baptism TWO different oils are used;
- The Oil of catechumens – The child is anointed on the chest with this oil as a sign that the Lord is giving them strength for the Christian journey they are beginning.
- The Oil of Chrism – A very sacred oil, which the child is anointed with on the top of the head. Oil is used to anoint kings and monarchs, it sets people aside for a mission. We are set aside for the Christian mission on the day we are baptised.
Profession of Faith:
YOU have requested baptism for your child. In doing this YOU ARE MAKING A COMMITMENT to bringing up your child in the faith. – We promise to live by Christian values and pass on those values to our child. We promise to bring our child to Mass and the Sacraments, for this is what it means to belong to the Christian family. Therefore we profess the faith that we promise, before the community gathered, to pass onto our child. We pray for the grace to live as good Christian witnesses before our child.
Water is essential for life! In Baptism, water symbolises the new life we receive in Christ. Just as we nurture and care for a plant or shrub, in order for it to live a healthy life, we too must nurture and care for our faith in order for it to grow healthy and strong.
The White Robe is a symbol of Christ. After they were baptised, the early Christians used to clothe themselves in white garments to show that they had “put on Christ”. In the same way, the child, during the baptism ceremony, is clothed in the white shawl to show that they are “clothed in Christ” or “wrapped up” in the love of Christ!
The Baptism Candle:
The large Easter Candle (or Pascal Candle) is lit for the Baptism ceremony. This light symbolises Christ, the Risen Lord, who overcame the cross and rose to new life. It is a symbol of hope! A smaller Baptism Candle is lit from the Easter Candle. This light, love and hope of Jesus is being passed on to the new Christian through YOU the parents.
After the Baptism Ceremony…
As your child grows it is important to pray with them, share some bible stories (maybe purchase a Children’s Bible), visit the Church to light a candle for someone who is sick, attend Mass…etc.
We pray God’s Blessing upon you in the challenge ahead of bringing up your child in the faith….
Registration of Baptism
The parish records the baptism of your child in the Baptismal Register of the parish. This record includes the full names of the child, parents and godparents, the child’s date of birth, the date of the baptism and the name of the officiating priest or deacon. A Ceritificate of Baptism can be issued by the Parish Office as and when required.
To view recent baptisms click here: