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  #1  
Old Jan 15, '10, 10:10 am
tsteeves tsteeves is offline
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Default Baptism for Older Children

Good afternoon everyone.
I have just returned to the church after not attending for about 18 years. My husband and I have four children. Our oldest was Christened, but our yougest (three boys) have not. They are aged 15, 8,and 7.

I was just wondering if there is anything different that is done for older baptisms. The two youngest are enrolled in catechism classes. I am anxioux to have this done soon, as our 8 year old is due to have his first communion in May.What about our 15yo, he hasn't had his first communion or his confirmation eithier.

I am also wondering what would be appropriate for them to wear. I doubt I could get any of them to wear a Christening dress, lol I was thinking of white jeans and white dress shirts. I'm sure anything would be appropriate considering their age. I just wanted them to wear something that will stand out.

I would appreciate anyt thought or comments.

T
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  #2  
Old Jan 15, '10, 10:51 am
Phemie Phemie is online now
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsteeves View Post
Good afternoon everyone.
I have just returned to the church after not attending for about 18 years. My husband and I have four children. Our oldest was Christened, but our yougest (three boys) have not. They are aged 15, 8,and 7.

I was just wondering if there is anything different that is done for older baptisms. The two youngest are enrolled in catechism classes. I am anxioux to have this done soon, as our 8 year old is due to have his first communion in May.What about our 15yo, he hasn't had his first communion or his confirmation eithier.

I am also wondering what would be appropriate for them to wear. I doubt I could get any of them to wear a Christening dress, lol I was thinking of white jeans and white dress shirts. I'm sure anything would be appropriate considering their age. I just wanted them to wear something that will stand out.

I would appreciate anyt thought or comments.

T
The 15 year old is an adult as defined by the Church. He will have to go through RCIA and he has to want to be baptized. He'd be baptized at the Easter Vigil at which time he would also be confirmed and receive Communion.

The 7 & 8 year olds could go either way, but depending on the parish might be made to be go through RCIA. The 8 year old can definitely not receive Communion until he's baptized. Have you talked to your pastor about that??

When we baptize children who aren't chronologically infants (as opposed to infants as defined by the Church) we ask them not to dress in white and when "The Presentation of the White Garment" is done, we dress them in an alb. Now, that's our parish's way of doing it. Other parishes may have other ideas. Your sons may not want to wear a white outfit but may be perfectly OK with donning the alb for the rest of Mass.
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  #3  
Old Jan 15, '10, 11:21 am
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Joe 5859 Joe 5859 is offline
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

Talk to your pastor about it ASAP. Chances are, the parish already has a protocol in place for you to follow with your family.

There is the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) and the RCIC (Rite of Christian Initiation for Children). The RCIC is similar to the RCIA but it is geared towards children. Generally speaking, those who go through RCIA and RCIC will receive all of the Sacraments of Initiation that they have not yet received (Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist). That's how the Rites say it is supposed to be anyway. As Phemie said, I believe your 15 year old would be of age for RCIA, but I'm not 100% positive. In any case, the pastor may decide it's best to put all three of your children in the same program.

Talk to your priest about the oldest, too. Depending upon the manner in which this "christening" took place, it may or may not constitute a valid sacramental Baptism. A valid Baptism must be done with water and the Trinitarian formula ("I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit"). If you're not sure about this and it cannot be determined one way or the other, then they can do a conditional Baptism (which means that, if the person has already received the Sacrament, it won't do anything, but if they haven't, it will be just as any other sacramental Baptism).
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  #4  
Old Jan 15, '10, 11:21 am
benedictgal benedictgal is offline
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phemie View Post
The 15 year old is an adult as defined by the Church. He will have to go through RCIA and he has to want to be baptized. He'd be baptized at the Easter Vigil at which time he would also be confirmed and receive Communion.

The 7 & 8 year olds could go either way, but depending on the parish might be made to be go through RCIA. The 8 year old can definitely not receive Communion until he's baptized. Have you talked to your pastor about that??

When we baptize children who aren't chronologically infants (as opposed to infants as defined by the Church) we ask them not to dress in white and when "The Presentation of the White Garment" is done, we dress them in an alb. Now, that's our parish's way of doing it. Other parishes may have other ideas. Your sons may not want to wear a white outfit but may be perfectly OK with donning the alb for the rest of Mass.
The oldest, from what the OP indicated, was "christened", but, as Joe noted above, we don't exactly know what that means. If he is also part of the group, his situation needs to be examined.

You are right, they need to talk with the pastor ASAP, especially for the three younger ones. The 15-year-old would have to go through the RCIA program for adults.

It is a gift of grace that the family is returning to the Church!

Welcome home!

Last edited by benedictgal; Jan 15, '10 at 11:37 am.
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  #5  
Old Jan 15, '10, 11:28 am
SuscipeMeDomine SuscipeMeDomine is online now
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

I'll agree with everyone else. You need to talk with your pastor or RCIA director. The younger children will need RCIA as adapted for children. I know that calling them "adults" sounds funny, but once children reach the age of reason -- about 7 years old -- they are considered adults for the purpose of baptism.

That doesn't mean that they'll be sitting in RCIA sessions with a bunch of adults. That wouldn't serve anyone well. They'll receive catechesis appropriate for their age. But they'll also go through the rites leading up to baptism, including the Rite of Acceptance and Rite of Election. They'll be baptized at the Easter Vigil along with adults in the parish.

Does anyone know that the 8-year-old isn't baptized? He can't receive his First Communion without having first been baptized.
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  #6  
Old Jan 15, '10, 3:27 pm
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

When whole families are baptized and/or received into the Church I think it is common for the whole family to enter at the Easter Vigil, even if some are not yet of the age of reason. But in this case all the children seem to be of the age of reason. Most likely the three unbaptized children will all be expected to be baptized, confirmed, and make their First Communion at the Easter Vigil. They would wear whatever the other people who will be baptized would wear.

I'm a bit puzzled that the eight year old is planning to make his First Communion along with a class. That's not usual for an unbaptized older child.

It seems unlikely to me that a parish would not realize that these are unbaptized children when they are enrolled in religious instruction but I'd want to make sure the parish realizes this. If the oldest is not currently attending instruction then it's time to speak with the pastor because it's kind of late in the "RCIA season".
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  #7  
Old Jan 15, '10, 4:24 pm
tsteeves tsteeves is offline
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

I did speak briefly to our priest about getting my three boys baptised. He didn't seem to have issue with it. i guess I just assumed it would be just like an infant baptism. And yes I realize that my 8yo cannot have his first commmunion until he has been baptised, that is why I want to have this done here in the next month. Their first communion is scheduled for May.

I'm just glad the church was allowing them to attend the catecism classes before they received this first sacrament. It would be a shame to exclude them because of my fault.

I will have to speak to my priest.
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  #8  
Old Jan 20, '10, 3:11 pm
MrsHall MrsHall is offline
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

Our boys, ages 8, 4 1/2, 2 1/2 and a baby (at the time) were baptized last year on Pentecost Sunday. The older two were immersed (though not submerged) and wore Tshirts and shorts, changing into suits afterward. The little boys wore shirts and ties and were poured. This was all worked out with our priest and the DRE. Our girls (12 and 10), my oldest son and my husband and myself all had our First Holy Communion on that day as well, and we dressed up for the occasion (husband in a suit, we girls in nice dresses) but there is no need for "white only" when it is not the typical infant baptism/7-year old's First Communion. It was Pentecost so we all had a touch of red (or more than a touch, in the girls' case) but that was at our discretion. Talk with your priest.
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  #9  
Old Jan 20, '10, 3:19 pm
Br. Rich SFO Br. Rich SFO is offline
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe 5859 View Post
Talk to your pastor about it ASAP. Chances are, the parish already has a protocol in place for you to follow with your family.

There is the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) and the RCIC (Rite of Christian Initiation for Children). The RCIC is similar to the RCIA but it is geared towards children. Generally speaking, those who go through RCIA and RCIC will receive all of the Sacraments of Initiation that they have not yet received (Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist). That's how the Rites say it is supposed to be anyway. As Phemie said, I believe your 15 year old would be of age for RCIA, but I'm not 100% positive. In any case, the pastor may decide it's best to put all three of your children in the same program.

Talk to your priest about the oldest, too. Depending upon the manner in which this "christening" took place, it may or may not constitute a valid sacramental Baptism. A valid Baptism must be done with water and the Trinitarian formula ("I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit"). If you're not sure about this and it cannot be determined one way or the other, then they can do a conditional Baptism (which means that, if the person has already received the Sacrament, it won't do anything, but if they haven't, it will be just as any other sacramental Baptism).

There is no such thing as RCIC.

It is either the Rite of Infant Baptism or the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults.
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  #10  
Old Jan 20, '10, 3:26 pm
Br. Rich SFO Br. Rich SFO is offline
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsteeves View Post
I did speak briefly to our priest about getting my three boys baptised. He didn't seem to have issue with it. i guess I just assumed it would be just like an infant baptism. And yes I realize that my 8yo cannot have his first commmunion until he has been baptised, that is why I want to have this done here in the next month. Their first communion is scheduled for May.

I'm just glad the church was allowing them to attend the catecism classes before they received this first sacrament. It would be a shame to exclude them because of my fault.

I will have to speak to my priest.
If he goes through RCIA adapted for children your 8yo will be Baptized, Confirmed and receive his First Holy Communion all at the same Easter Vigil, most likely Easter 2011.

However both the 7 and 8yo could be Baptized using the Rite of Infant Baptism.

The 15yo would be Baptized, Confirmed and receive her First Holy Communion all at the same Easter Vigil, Easter 2011.
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  #11  
Old Jan 20, '10, 5:15 pm
horselvr horselvr is offline
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

Whew! I got worried there for a minute. Thanks for clearing that up Br. Rich SFO.

Just before my MOM died I had promised her that I would return to the Church and I would have my son Baptised/Confirmed which I did.

He was also 15 yrs old at the time and he went through the RCIA class. He actually loved the history of the church and so he very much enjoyed the RCIA classes. The teachers were excellent as was the young Priest that would speak at some of the classes. It was so enjoyable that I stayed for the next 5 yrs first to learn more and then as a sponsor. LOL!

My son and his class went away to retreat in the mountains of NC and could not say enough good things about the whole experience. I too have gone there for retreat and it is awesome. I thank my MOM everday to having me promise to get back to Church and having my son received the Sacraments.

I'm sure your 15 yr old especially will really enjoy this whole experience.
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  #12  
Old Jan 21, '10, 6:08 am
puzzleannie puzzleannie is offline
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsteeves View Post
Good afternoon everyone.
I have just returned to the church after not attending for about 18 years. My husband and I have four children. Our oldest was Christened, but our yougest (three boys) have not. They are aged 15, 8,and 7.

I was just wondering if there is anything different that is done for older baptisms. The two youngest are enrolled in catechism classes. I am anxioux to have this done soon, as our 8 year old is due to have his first communion in May.What about our 15yo, he hasn't had his first communion or his confirmation eithier.

T
Welcome Home! how wonderful for a whole family to be brought to the grace of Christ through the sacraments.

the older children come to the sacraments through RCIA adapted for children (or teens in this case) since they are over the age of reason (7). When you enrolled for CCD or RE they should have told you this, because they will be prepared for baptism, confirmation and first communion at the same time, usually during the Easter vigil, and after an extended period of catechesis, not less than one year and usually more. Your oldest would be preparing for confirmation and communion which will probably be celebrated at the same time. All will most likely be in a class with their peers, even the same class they are in now, but come with you and their godparents for extra instruction on precisely what is involved for the RCIA part of this.

Please speak to the pastor and the CCD director this week, make sure they understand the baptismal status of each of your children and get things straightened out as the schedule for each child may be slightly different.

God bless you, you can do this, and it is not your fault at all if someone in the parish dropped the ball.
There will also be some classes involved for parents to help you prepare and they will discuss what to wear etc.

Be sure to talk to your pastor and whoever he delegates, because there is flexibility with the issue of exactly what is the cut-off age for infant baptism, or older children and RCIA. Canon law says the "age of reason" and that generally means about age 7, so you see the pastor has some discretion here. yes they must be baptized before receiving other sacraments.

When you say your oldest was christened, does that mean baptized in the Catholic Church? if not there may be some further needs for him as well.
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  #13  
Old Jan 21, '10, 7:26 am
TCostello TCostello is offline
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Smile Re: Baptism for Older Children

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsteeves View Post
I have just returned to the church after not attending for about 18 years.
Dear tsteeves,

Welcome back to the Church! It is so wonderful that you and your family have returned. God's grace is amazing and something to celebrate. My family and I wish you the very best in your journey.
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  #14  
Old Jan 21, '10, 10:44 am
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Joe 5859 Joe 5859 is offline
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

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Originally Posted by Br. Rich SFO View Post
There is no such thing as RCIC.

It is either the Rite of Infant Baptism or the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults.
I've seen a lot of Catholic publishers and parishes use the term (including the Association for Catechumenal Ministry). It is used in Catholic circles. Perhaps it's one of those things (like an "annulment") where the popular phrase is not the same as the technically correct term ("declaration of nullity"). I wasn't aware that it wasn't the technical term. Good to know.

In any case, though the rites may be the same, parishes don't usually put the children in with the adults for the catechetical component. Larger parishes may even have something in place specifically for children in the OP's situation. That's what I was getting at.
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The more I follow the online discussions ... the more I follow the debates and disagreements in the Church about administrative unity, or the concerns expressed about the moral or personal or administrative or leadership failings of the bishops or the clergy, the more I become convinced that whatever might be the truth of these concerns, ALL of this is simply a distraction. No, itís more than that. Itís a justification, an excuse, for not helping each other and those outside the Church fall in love with Jesus Christ. How easy it is to talk about everything, but about Jesus hardly at all.

- Fr. Gregory Jensen
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  #15  
Old Jan 21, '10, 2:29 pm
Br. Rich SFO Br. Rich SFO is offline
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Default Re: Baptism for Older Children

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe 5859 View Post
I've seen a lot of Catholic publishers and parishes use the term (including the Association for Catechumenal Ministry). It is used in Catholic circles. Perhaps it's one of those things (like an "annulment") where the popular phrase is not the same as the technically correct term ("declaration of nullity"). I wasn't aware that it wasn't the technical term. Good to know.

In any case, though the rites may be the same, parishes don't usually put the children in with the adults for the catechetical component. Larger parishes may even have something in place specifically for children in the OP's situation. That's what I was getting at.
There can be and should be when necessary an RCIA process geared or adapted for children.
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