The Sacrament of Baptism - Firstly, we want to congratulate you on the birth of your child. We also want to welcome this new born child into our Parish Community. Parents are the first teachers of their child in the way of faith. The Baptism preparation is an effort to help them in that role. Your child's Baptism will be a special moment for you and your family. It will also be a special moment for our parish as we welcome your child into the Christian Community.
Arrangements for Baptisms in St. Michael's Parish
Baptisms are held in St. Michael's Church on the second and fourth Saturday of every month at 3.00pm.
Notice: Parents should book the baptism of their child at the Parish Office and must give at least three weeks' notice. (Tel: 66322075)
Preparing for Baptism: Parents and Godparents are expected to attend a Preparation Session prior to the actual baptism. These sessions are facilitated by the Parish Baptism Team and take place on the Wednesday after the 1st Sunday of each month in St. Michael's Church, beginning at 8.00pm. As a reminder, the dates of the preparation sessions are published in the parish messenger.
What to bring on the day!
You are asked to ensure that you bring the completed BAPTISM CARD (included in this pack) with you to the preparation session.
You will need a white garment/shawl and a baptismal candle for the celebration of the sacrament. Candles are available to buy in St. Michael's bookshop.
A Community Celebration
Baptism is one of the Sacraments of Initiation and is usually the first time your new baby will be in the Church. This is, therefore, a great occasion of celebration by the whole community. For this reason there will usually be several babies baptised on the same day. Out of consideration for everyone, you are asked to be at the church in good time. A member of the Parish Baptism Team will be present to welcome you and to help with seating and other practical arrangements.
In the days following the baptism of your baby, the priest will add their name to the Parish Register. The information recorded in the Parish Register will be taken directly from the Baptism Card which you bring with you. Therefore it is important that all details are filled in correctly and completely.
The Baptismal Service
1. The Baptism celebration begins with the welcome of the child into the church. The Sign of the Cross is traced on the child's forehead to show that he/she belongs to Christ.
2. We listen to the Word of God
3. We pray for the child and his/her family.
4. The child is anointed with the Oil of Cathechumens to give strength.
5. The water of Baptism is blessed. Water is for cleansing. Water is also necessary for life.
6. We renew our Baptismal promises.
7. The child is blessed.
8. The child is anointed with the Oil of Chrism to give strength to live as a friend of Jesus, and bring others to Jesus.
9. The White Garment is a sign of Christian dignity.
10. The Candle symbolises Christ as the light of the world.
11. The child's mouth and ears are blessed.
12. We conclude our celebration of Baptism by looking forward to the next Sacrament the child will celebrate - First Communion and Confirmation.
13. We pray the Our Father - the prayer that unites all Christians.
14. The Final Blessing of the newly Baptised child, the child's parents and the whole community who have gathered to celebrate the Baptism, is given.
15. The Dismissal - we are all sent out to bring God's peace to our world.
Things to Note:
• Parents are to bring a candle and separate White Garment.
• The name that you give your child is important.
• Sponsors should have reached the age of 16 years.
• The extended family members are all welcome to participate in the Baptism ceremony.
A Parent's Blessing
When you were born
Our hearts were so full of happiness
That there was no room in us for words.
When you were growing
Our hearts were so full of care for you
That we spoke soothingly
And sometimes sharply.
Fearful for your safety,
But always in the deepest places of our hearts
We spoke lovingly.
As we watch you
Moving forward with your friends
We marvel at all you have done
Our spirits sing praise to God
For the gift that is you.
And, though our hearts
Have stretched to love others,
Yet, there is still a place within us
That is yours and only yours,
For the light you have shone on us,
For the life you have called us to,
For the special gift of God
You are now, and will ever be,