Can a priest refuse to baptise a baby because it was born via IVF?

A friend of me said she heard a priest refused to baptize a baby because it was conceived via IVF. This did not sound right to me. I told her maybe the priest refused to baptized the baby because the parents were not practicing Catholics. Why would a priest refuse to baptized a baby?

No, a priest cannot refuse to baptize a baby on the grounds that IVF was used. Whatever the means were that brought the child into the world are not the child’s fault. The sins of the parents cannot be used against the child.

Canon Law does require that there be some hope that the child will be raised as a Catholic. If the parents are not practicing the faith in any meaningful manner the pastor may be delaying the baptism to help the parents understand the sacrament and the responsibility it calls for.

CDF’s Pastoralis actio:

Assurances must be given that the gift thus granted can grow by an authentic education in the faith and Christian life, in order to fulfill the true meaning of the sacrament. As a rule, these assurances are to be given by the parents or close relatives, although various substitutions are possible within the Christian community. But if these assurances are not really serious there can be grounds for delaying the sacrament; and if they are certainly non-existent the sacrament should even be refused.

…In the first place it must be clear that the refusal of Baptism is not a means of exercising pressure. Nor can one speak of refusal, still less of discrimination, but rather of educational delay, according to individual cases, aimed at helping the family to grow in faith or to become more aware of its responsibilities.

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