Am I qualified to do readings at mass


I live 100% in accordance with church teachings and have a valid marriage but my wife who is baptist won’t let our young children get baptized until they decide on their own. I want them to be baptized but feel unqualified to partisicpate at church because they aren’t


This does not disqualify you. You are a practicing Catholic in good standing in the Church.


Pax Christi!

In our parish one needs to have been confirmed and be a member of the parish (=be on their mailing list).

God bless.


This is technically not the way the Church decides who is a “member of a parish” It is a geographical decision, not a registration at the front desk one.


None of that disqualifies you to be an active member of the parish. It is however up to the Father who reads and who does not. It is not a right just because it is something you want to do.

I would understand the Church maybe not wanting you to say, lead a religious ed program or teach the baptism classes, but reading should be fine.:shrug:


As a Catholic it is your responsibility to raise your children in the faith. And it is your job as a spouse to help your wife get to heaven. I would continue to try to lovingly but earnestly try to get your wife on board.

It would kill me to think that my dear precious children were not baptized. I would catch my breath every time they stubbed a toe.


The Church accepts that your wife has freedom of religion and has a say in how the children are raised.

This is official Church teaching per the ***Directory for the Application of Principles and Norms on Ecumenism:
***151. In carrying out this duty of transmitting the Catholic faith to the children, the Catholic parent will do so with respect for the religious freedom and conscience of the other parent and with due regard for the unity and permanence of the marriage and for the maintenance of the communion of the family. If, notwithstanding the Catholic’s best efforts, the children are not baptized and brought up in the Catholic Church, the Catholic parent does not fall subject to the censure of Canon Law. At the same time, his/her obligation to share the Catholic faith with the children does not cease. It continues to make its demands, which could be met, for example, by playing an active part in contributing to the Christian atmosphere of the home; doing all that is possible by word and example to enable the other members of the family to appreciate the specific values of the Catholic tradition; taking whatever steps are necessary to be well informed about his/her own faith so as to be able to explain and discuss it with them; praying with the family for the grace of Christian unity as the Lord wills it.


I said nothing contrary to that.

I am curious OP:
What religion will your children be raised in when your wife deems them old enough to be cleansed of original sin?


Long ago the non-Catholic party met together with their future spouse with the priest. It was explained to the non-Catholic that they needed to agree that the children the couple had would be baptized in the Catholic Church. Something had to be signed to show that the non-Catholic party would cooperate.

Some time passed, and now it has become an oral agreement.

Then it seems to have changed into “when the above doesn’t work, then just don’t argue?” (Of course arguing is not a solution, calm discussion needs to take place, backed by lots of prayer.)

Of course, the best case scenario is when two Catholics who put the Lord first in their lives and agrees to follow Church teaching marry.

Sadly, I hear so many compromises and lessening of commitment taking place.

It is always good to remember that with God all things are possible, but, of course, we have to cooperate with Him.


Before 1983 the non-Catholic parties had to agree to the children being baptized and raised Catholic (my husband had to sign papers when we got married in 1975).

Since 1983 they don’t have to agree to anything.

The Catholic parties still have to promise, under oath, to do everything in their power (in our diocese that still requires their signature) to have the children baptized and raised as Catholics.

The non-Catholic parties are informed of that promise and its meaning. Nothing more is required from them. In our diocese they still have to sign to say that they’ve been informed.


Honestly, I would ask Dear Wife if she’d attend an RCIA class… just to learn about the Catholic faith.

Although I considered myself to be agnostic, I grew up in a loosely bible-baptist household. From first hand knowledge, I can tell you, that many good Baptists (my G.Pa amongst them - RIP) have a great deal of misunderstanding about the Catholic faith. If OP’s wife would attend a good RCIA program to gain a better understanding of the faith, she might be more willing to allow the children to be baptized with the understanding that, unlike with Baptists, baptism for RCs it is separated from confirmation.

HEY Catholicskier… in the mean time… go to Mass and Reconciliation - TAKE THE CHILDREN! Even if they cannot receive - studies have shown that the faith of the father figure in the family structure has a direct effect upon the children and your kids will take note of your faith!
Talk with the Pastor at the Church about your situation and your desire to be more involved with the Church.
Find a TMIY program in your area (click here)
It would be great if your kids were in a Catholic school, if not then some sort of Family Faith Formation (click here) or some Parish Religious Education (PRE/CCD) class. if you can’t do any of the above, there are several good children faith education series available at Catholic bookstores
Catholicskier, what happens often, is if one parent isn’t proactive, then the children default to the easiest path. So please, be proactive in your faith… and remember
preach the gospel daily and when necessary use words

and when you have the time, or just need a few moments of peace in your life, click thru the links in my sig.- set about 20 minutes aside for that last link, I have too.- :slight_smile:


Hello CS.

I’m confused - if you are in a mixed marriage and are truly living according to Church teachings as you say, then your children would be Baptized already and going to Church with you each Sunday. Your question about the Readings is an aside. That question can only be answered by your Pastor as it is ultimately his decision who participates at the Altar and who doesn’t. So ask him.



Do baptists “baptise” their children? I was under the impression (may be wrong), that there is only one baptism. So, a Baptised Christian wishing to become Catholic does not need to be baptised again.

In any event, did your wife promise to cooperate in the raising of your children as Catholic? Or are you saying that she is, with the exception of not allowing baptism at a young age?

How will your children approach the time for their first reception of reconciliation, communion and confirmation if they are not baptised? Denying all these would seem to be at odds with the obligation to cooperate in the bringing up of the children in the Catholic faith.

None of this bars you from reading at Mass, but I sympathise with the awkward position in which it places you.


Baptists don’t practice infant Baptism so it’s not surprising that the OP’s wife wants to wait.

I know that in the Canadian military, when a Protestant padre is Baptist, he doesn’t have to celebrate infant Baptism for any of the Protestants in his congregation who do practice infant Baptism. They usually approach the local congregations for that sacrament.


I believe one can have the children baptised unilaterly.


In this case if one wants to sleep on the couch for the next year or so…


There would be several adverse consequences of that course of action. At this point, better to understand the promises (if any) made by the wife to bring up the children in the catholic faith, and how her position on baptism is / is not consistent with that.


Well, some couches are comfortable and the tradeoff is the children are baptised, which is necessary for salvation. It is always interesting to me that the wife should not be on the couch for her unilateral decision to not do something the OP would believe would be salvific to his children. Imagine the physchological problems should (God forbid) something happen to the children. The husband would always have horrid feelings and issues.

Why in the world would the wife be given a pass for that type of unilateral decision but not the husband?

Perhaps she should be on the couch. Couches are not gender specific.:wink:


I confess to being unclear exactly what this means. Large numbers of good people and children are not baptised - what consequence does this imply? All I can say is that I am certain no harm, no suffering befalls such a soul.


You should not be unclear to what that means. It is the Church herself that teaches this. Baptism is necessary for salvation.

1257 The Lord himself affirms that Baptism is necessary for salvation.60 He also commands his disciples to proclaim the Gospel to all nations and to baptize them.61 Baptism is necessary for salvation for those to whom the Gospel has been proclaimed and who have had the possibility of asking for this sacrament.62 The Church does not know of any means other than Baptism that assures entry into eternal beatitude; this is why she takes care not to neglect the mission she has received from the Lord to see that all who can be baptized are “reborn of water and the Spirit.” God has bound salvation to the sacrament of Baptism, but he himself is not bound by his sacraments.

And we teach that there can be a trust in God’s mercy for the unbaptized. But we cannot be “certain” as you claim.

1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus’ tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church’s call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.

Ok, so what do we know, we know that baptism cleanses all sin. And it is the only known way to cleans original sin. All people (except Mary) have had original sin. And one cannot enter heaven with it. This is a consequence of the fall of man. We are told to baptize all nations but especially our own children. There is a such thing as baptism of desire that the Church teaches but that may or may not factor into the OPs situation.

The fact remains that we are commanded to baptize. That it is the only way ever revealed to the entirety of mankind to get rid of original sin which bars us from heaven.

I guess what I don’t understand from you is if it is necessary for the OP to baptize his children then why do we even have the sacrament at all? And why does the Church demand it of children?

This is the problem of limbo. Which you may or may not believe in. But just because the Church does not officially teach limbo does not automatically solve the problem that limbo was created to address.


Hello Rau.

How can you deny the immense and immeasurable benefit of Baptism on a soul? You say no harm in leaving them un-baptized so hubby can have his warm and cozy each night? “No harm, no suffering befalls such a soul?” This is a direct refutation of what the Church teaches about the necessity of Baptism. Without it no one gains Heaven. How can this be harmless or lack suffering? Please explain.


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