Baptism- baby- how soon?

Hello everyone,

I learned a few months ago that my wife is pregnant.

Initially we planned to go outside the US for my child’s baptism, as both mine and my wife’s close relatives are outside the US.

But now with the whole covid-19 situation, it looks like the baptism will have to be held here in the US.

How soon should a baptism be done? is it ok to wait till age 1? or do we have to do it in the first few months right after birth? My mother told me that I was baptised when I was 2.5 months old.

Better to do it sooner than later, typically within a few weeks or a couple of months.

Deacon Christopher


Canon Law says baptism should take place in a few weeks after birth. There is not a defination of “few”.

I’ve heard some priests advise that within 1 month is good practice, that to wait 2 months can be a sin (in usual circumstances, not now when some Dioceses may have suspended all but emergency baptisms)

Baptize ASAP, later fly for party with family.


I wanted the child’s grandparents to be the godparents. But they are in another country.

How do we choose godparents in that case? it has to be close relatives right?

You may have them be the godparents and have others stand in a proxies for the godparents.

As others have said, Canon Law states baptism should happen within the first few weeks.

Congratulations on your baby!!!


They don’t have to be, no.


@Diaconia, Are grandparents allowed to be godparents? :thinking: Or is it just discouraged?

My older daughter and my son were both baptized at 4 days old, my younger daughter was 2 weeks old, I’m a firm believer in the sooner the better.


thank you. Woah is there such a thing as proxy godparents? Never knew.

Yes, they can be. The only persons prohibited in the current Code are the parents.

Sometimes the grandparents are the only persons of faith around the child. One thing to remember, however – it is preferable if the sponsor can also serve as the confirmation sponsor, some years later. Sometimes grandparents are of an age that makes this not likely.

Sponsors are not technically required, by the way. And the prohibitions on spouses, clerics and religious serving as them from the 1917 Code no longer exist.

God bless all who come to His life-giving water,
Deacon Christopher


Thank you, that might have been my confusion. :slightly_smiling_face:

That’s interesting. I’ve never heard that. Learned something new today.

1 Like

That never came up for me as when I was confirmed we did not have individual sponsors for confirmation. Back in the olden days, when 100 of us or more made our confirmation, the parish supplied someone or maybe a couple to act as sponsors for all.

Ah, I date myself now. :wink:

You should baptize a baby as soon as is feasible.

It’s new in the 1984 Code - the 1917 Code preferred different persons.

Deacon Christopher

1 Like

is it ok to have 2 baptismal names for the child? Like John Paul. or is 1 name the norm?

1 Like

Yes, that’s entirely up to you.

The only restriction on name(s) is that it not be contrary to Christian sentiment.

For example - Jezebel (an enemy of the Chosen People), or Satan / Lucifer (the Prince of Darkness).

I have personally baptized several John Pauls, FYI.

Deacon Christopher


You’re dating me too, as the parish I belonged to did the same thing.

OTOH, I became a godmother for the first time at 16 (to my godmother’s daughter) and later stood as her sponsor for Confirmation.

1 Like

It’s been a common name where I come from since long before Popes John Paul & John Paul II.

1 Like

ever heard of Joseph Leo combination? for St Joseph and St Leo the Great. is that a rare combination?

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