Sacrament of Baptism
“Holy 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 of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission” (Catechism, 1213).
Baptism of Infants
Baptism of infants is celebrated publicly during the Sunday mass or privately at some other time. To make arrangements for your child’s baptism, please contact the rectory at 202-999-9934.
If you have a priest or deacon who is a close friend or relative, they are most welcome to celebrate the baptism of your child. You can make such arrangements when you contact the rectory.
“For the grace of Baptism to unfold, the parents’ help is important. So too is the role of the godfather and godmother, who must be firm believers, able and ready to help the newly baptized – child or adult – on the road of Christian life” (Catechism 1255).
Godparents are charged with the responsibility of assisting with the development and safeguarding of the grace given at Baptism. Due to the importance of their role, godparents must obtain a letter of eligibility from their parishes to certify that they meet the Church’s requirements for this role:
- A child must have at least one eligible sponsor; he or she may have two godparents, in which case one is a man and the other is a woman.
- The godparent must not be a parent of the one to be baptized.
- The godparent must be:
- at least sixteen years of age;
- a fully-initiated Catholic; that is, he or she has received Baptism, Confirmation and First Communion;
- a practicing Catholic; that is, he or she attends Mass every Sunday and holyday, receives the sacraments regularly, and, if married, is married in the Church.
- Along with an eligible sponsor, a baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic Christian church or ecclesial community (i.e., Episcopal, Protestant, evangelical, etc.) may be admitted as a Christian witness to the baptism.(Code of Canon Law, c. 874; cf. Catechism, 1255)
Baptism of Adults, Teens, or Older Children
Adults and teenagers who have never been baptized are prepared privately to receive the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and First Communion at the same time. The Church considers children over the age of seven as being of catechetical age (i.e., they are capable of receiving instruction on the sacraments and their faith). As such, they also are prepared for baptism privately.
If you are an adult or a teenager who wishes to be baptized, or have a child over the age of seven who you wish to have baptized, please contact the pastor at 202-999-9934 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org to make the necessary arrangements.