A Question on Infant Baptisms & Vatican 2

The Second Vatican Council teaches that both a soul’s response to God as well as their faith cannot be forced on someone or coerced.

How do infant Baptisms adhere to the Second Vatican Council? I do not understand. Doesn’t the parent decide for the child by force, by forcing them to be Baptized as seeking Baptism itself is a response of faith, what the child’s faith will be and if it responds to God in faith?

Can someone explain infant Baptisms in light of the Second Vatican Council??

No they do not decide by force. Anymore than they are forcing the child to be conceived…to be born…to live with them …to be in their family…etc.

Yes the Parents and the Church are professing the Faith for the Child and bringing them up in the Faith.

The Faith is infused though not by the parents in baptism - but by GOD - who also created them without their consent…

Tis pure gift.


The Baptism of infants

1250 Born with a fallen human nature and tainted by original sin, children also have need of the new birth in Baptism to be freed from the power of darkness and brought into the realm of the freedom of the children of God, to which all men are called.50 The sheer gratuitousness of the grace of salvation is particularly manifest in infant Baptism. The Church and the parents would deny a child the priceless grace of becoming a child of God were they not to confer Baptism shortly after birth.51

1251 Christian parents will recognize that this practice also accords with their role as nurturers of the life that God has entrusted to them.52

1252 The practice of infant Baptism is an immemorial tradition of the Church. There is explicit testimony to this practice from the second century on, and it is quite possible that, from the beginning of the apostolic preaching, when whole “households” received baptism, infants may also have been baptized.53


Thank you! Well explained!

The Second Vatican Council did not change any Catholic teaching on Baptism.

Infant baptism has existed since the time of Christ.

So why ask about 'in light of Vatican II" as if it taught something different from the previous 1900 years? Haven’t all Christians since Christ, up until a matter of less than 400 years ago, as a part of a fracturing of Christendom, baptized infants?

Heck, our Eastern Rite Catholics not only baptize infants, the infants are CONFIRMED at the same time (my boys are Maronite). And according to my Orthodox friends, their infants are not only baptized and confirmed, they also receive the Eucharist, right from the start. . .

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.