After Jesus was baptized, he came up from the water and behold, the heavens were opened [for him], and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove [and] coming upon him. And a voice came from the heavens, saying, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” Matthew 3:16-17.
Our Sacred Heart parish family welcomes you and your child. Baptism marks a significant event in the life of your child, for through Baptism the child becomes a member of the Body of Christ, the Church. Baptism also opens the doors to the other sacraments, which allows for spiritual growth and support.
We ask that you read the following guidelines carefully. If questions arise, please contact us. We want your child’s Baptism to be a spiritual and memorable event. May God bless you as you prepare to begin the journey of faith with your child.
In order for a child to be baptized at Sacred Heart, the parents (at least one) must be registered members of Sacred Heart Church for at least three months.
The Baptismal program at Sacred Heart requires attendance at the Baptism preparation classes. The preparation consists of two two-hour sessions (usually Sundays) and is offered on a quarterly basis. The church office should be consulted for available dates. Attendance at the classes is a requirement. Since both parents form the spiritual life of the child, even non-Catholic parents are required to attend. Parents are encouraged to attend the class before the birth of the child, but that is not a requirement. If child care is needed, it must be requested by calling the Church office. Infants may stay with their parents, if needed. The godparents are also required to attend a Baptism class. They may attend in their home parish and furnish us with a letter verifying their class attendance.
Although it is customary to have both a godmother and a godfather, only one godparent is required. To serve as a godparent, a person must be an active participating Catholic, at least sixteen years old, who has received First Communion and Confirmation, and who is also registered in a parish. If married, the marriage must be recognized by the Catholic Church. After the form is filled out and signed, please return it to the parish office. The godparents must request a letter to verify their attendance at Baptism class and attach it to the godparent form.
A baptized person of another faith cannot serve as a godparent, since the godparents represent the community of faith into which the child is being baptized. In addition, the godparents are chosen to instill and support the faith of the community in which the child will one day receive the sacraments. A person baptized in another faith may serve as a Christian witness.
The celebration of the Sacrament is always communal in nature; therefore, private Baptisms are discouraged. Baptisms are scheduled on the second Sunday of each month following the 11:30 mass. If it is not possible for the family to baptize at the scheduled time, Baptism can be scheduled at other times, if a priest or deacon is available. These arrangements must be made in advance through the Church Office.
In addition to attending the Baptism classes, the parents must provide the church office with the following documentation:
1) the completed registration
2) a government-issued copy of the child’s birth certificate
3) godparent(s) forms and letter(s)
4) letter to verify Baptism class attendance if class is taken at a parish other than Sacred Heart, Richmond
Baptisms will not be scheduled until both the parents and the godparent(s) have attended the Baptism class and all these documents have been provided. Please note that Baptism is not automatically scheduled after you have attended the class and submitted the required paperwork. To schedule the Baptism you must either come to the church office, call the church office, or email the church office 281-342-3609, firstname.lastname@example.org, when you have completed all the requirements.
Please note that if you do not complete all the requirements and properly schedule the Baptism through the church office at least two weeks in advance of the requested Baptism date, a Baptismal certificate cannot be prepared. Without that certificate, the priest/deacon will need to postpone the Baptism of your child until a later date.
We look forward to celebrating the Baptism of your child with you, and pray God’s blessings on you as you continue your journey.