2nd baptism???

Hi there,
I have a question regarding baptisms. A friend’s baby daughter had surgery a few months back. She hadn’t been baptised yet so the night before the surgery, their family priest baptised her in the hospital. Thankfully, she has made a full recovery. I thought maybe there would be a get-together to celebrate now she is home, but not a Church baptism ceremony. Today I received an invite for her baptism at Chuch. I am confused because I thought you could only be baptised once. Don’t get me wrong. I am happy to have a chance to share this day with my friends but I am still learning and curious about Church rules. I am getting too hung up on the details or is there an exception for special circumstances? Thanks!

The baby should definitely not be rebaptized. To rebaptize someone who was validly baptized is a sacrilege, not to mention that it also contradicts the Creed, in which we confess “one baptism unto the remission of sins,” not several baptisms.

The child probably had only the pouring of the water and the speaking of the formula at the time of her baptism in the hospital. What they are having now are probably the rest of the ritual: the anointing with chrism, the presentation of the white garment, the light and the ephpheta rite.

:yup: in fact this is what is supposed to be done in cases of emergency ‘bare bones’ baptisms - when it’s possible, the rest of the rituals are meant to be completed in church. :thumbsup:

Thanks for your quick & thoughtful replys. That makes so much sense!:newidea:

Just to reinforce what others have already posted: Baptism can only happen once. What you have actually been invited to attend is a special ceremony in which the Rites of the Church (which were lacking in the emergency) are supplied. For all practical purposes, this will look just like any other baptism, except that there will be no pouring of water with the Trinitarian formula; since of course, that’s already been done.

My guess is that the parents decided that to invite friends and family to a “Ritual of supplying the missing rites of the Church” would have made an akward invitation-card, and decided to just stick with the customary “you are invited to a Baptism” card.

Thanks to you too FrDavid96! That makes even more sense.:slight_smile:

I have a question regarding having my 9 year old daughter rebaptized. She was baptized in the catholic church as an infant. And because of her God mother’s sexual orientation she no longer wishes to speak to her God Mother, nor do I. Is it possible to have her rebaptized or to have someone else named as her God Mother?

Your daughter is baptized, a 2nd baptism is not needed.

I know my daughter is already baptized. That wasn’t the question. The questions was can she be rebaptized or can someone else be named on her baptismal certificate as her God mother. In our family God Parents play a vital role in our children’s lives. They are role models, and are the ones chosen to care for our children when and if needed.

no she cannot be rebaptized. Paul tells us there is one Lord, one Faith, one Baptism. The sacrament confers and indelible seal on the soul and for that reason cannot be repeated. No you cannot change the permanent sacramental record, either, because you cannot change history. What you can do is find good Catholic adults, whether relatives or not, to be a significant part of your child’s life and supply that role model and support for you in raising her in a Catholic environment.

Welcome to the forums! For future reference, it is generally preferable to start a new thread for your question, rather than following up on an existing thread.

To answer your question, no, once a person is validly baptized they can never be “re-baptized.” The person who stood as the sponsor for your daughter at the baptism (her Godmother) fulfilled that role at the time of the baptism and the records cannot be changed, even if she later is no longer close to your family, leaves the faith, etc.

While your family has an admirable tradition of having the Godparents play a continuing important role in your children’s lives, this is not a requirement of the Church and if you no longer want this person to play a significant role in your daughter’s life, you can simply select someone else who will play such a role for your daughter in the future. When the time comes, it would be appropriate for you/your daughter to ask this person to serve as sponsor for her confirmation.

Finally, you mentioned that the Godmonther’s sexual orientation is the reason you no longer wish her to be involved in your daughter’s life. I will just add that I hope you are not being uncharitable towards her and that you are keeping in mind the Church’s call to accept homosexual persons “with respect, compassion, and sensitivity” and avoiding every sign of unjust discrimination (CCC 2358).

I know quite a few gay Christians–Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant.

Their faith would put many other Christians to shame.

BTW–where did you get the idea that you could have your daughter baptized again to get a new godmother?

This reminds me of a couple of posts about people threatening to have their chidren’s (in one case an adult) baptism anulled so they could rebaptize them with new godparents.

Apparently these people had had some kind of quarrel with the original sponsors, and were trying to punish them.

Obviously, that can’t be done, either.

The Church will celebrate the additional Rites of Baptism (white garment, anointing, Candle, signs and prayers, but not another actual Baptism.

You can have someone step in and act as her Godmother, from here forward. This person could then be her official Confirmation sponsor, to make it official.

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