Can I be a sponsor at a Methodist Baptism?


#1

My sister who was raised and confirmed Catholic married a non-Christian in a Catholic ceremony (not a Catholic Mass), she recently had a baby and asked me to be a Baptism sponsor in which the baby will be baptized in a Methodist church. The baptism vows are vague and mention nothing of raising the child Methodist or professing and living the Methodist faith, just Christian. As a Catholic should I accept or decline? Thanks


#2

You may attend as a witness to the baptism, but not as a sponsor.

While the baptismal vows sound vague and noncommittal, by standing up as a sponsor, you are “standing as guarantees of the candidate’s faith and desire for ecclesial communion” (Directory for the Application of Principles and Norms on Ecumenism).

  1. It is the Catholic understanding that godparents, in a liturgical and canonical sense, should themselves be members of the Church or ecclesial Community in which the baptism is being celebrated. They do not merely undertake a responsibility for the Christian education of the person being baptized (or confirmed) as a relation or friend; they are also there as representatives of a community of faith, standing as guarantees of the candidate’s faith and desire for ecclesial communion.

a) However, based on the common baptism and because of ties of blood or friendship, a baptized person who belongs to another ecclesial Community may be admitted as a witness to the baptism, but only together with a Catholic godparent. A Catholic may do the same for a person being baptized in another ecclesial Community.
Directory for the Application of Principles and Norms on Ecumenism

Canon 874 §2. A baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community is not to participate except together with a Catholic sponsor and then only as a witness of the baptism.


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