Baptisms by the Pope at the Easter Vigil

I’m watching the Easter Vigil right now from St. Peter’s, and it is beautiful, as always. Can someone please tell me how those who are baptized by the Pope are chosen? I’m sure there must be many requests by RCIA candidates.

I would assume that those Baptized were Elect from the diocese of Rome, of which the Pope is Bishop?

That makes sense to me, but someone asked me if they were somehow chosen from different geographic dioceses from around the world to represent the universality of the Church.

I’ve heard of couples being Married in Rome, and having their baby Baptized by the Pope. But not sure of Adult Baptisms through RCIA? I did not see the video of the Popes Easter Vigil.

The babies, for the most part, are the children of the Swiss Guard and other Vatican City employees. Now, the Elect, I believe, do come from various regions throughout the world. While some come from Rome, if you were to look at the outfits, the Elect will wear their native dress.

It would make sense since it represented the universality of the Church. It seems that it would however be very difficult to coordinate.

Hmm…is St. Peter’s Basilica considered a parish church?

No, it actually is not.

Saint John Lateran is actually the Pope’s cathedral.

Actually, the parish church is Sant’ Anna dei Palafrenieri.

I don’t think that the Swiss Guards can marry while they are serving. I know that the Commander has a wife.

If the Guards were permitted to marry, where would their wives and children live? Their quarters are not exactly ‘luxurious’ :o .

Probably true. While the elect may show the universality of the Church, I am always in awe of the oneness in the Church and Holy Orders - that the person baptized by the Bishop of Rome in St. Peter’s or the newest ordained priest in a mud hut receives the same Spirit, the same Graces, the same Lord.

I did hear that the children baptized were those of the Swiss Guard. This was from the Vatican Radio commentary for the Mass marking the Solemnity of the Baptism of the Lord.

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