Can I have my child baptized before I am married?

  1. I have a 4 year old child outside of marriage. Her soon to be step father and I want her baptized Catholic, since the 2 of us are confirmed Catholics. Do we have to wait until after we are married to have her Baptized?

  2. My fiance and I are getting married next year, but we have decided not to get married in our church. My future husband’s best friend and the man who brought him back to Christ is a Pentecostal minister. He brought my fiance back to Christ and my fiance brought me back to Christ and we as a couple felt it only right that the man who brought us back to Christ should be the man who marries us before Him. My only question is will the Catholic church recognize our marriage? Or do we have to get some kind of OK from the Catholic Church?

  3. Seeing as I am a single mother, is there any sort or specific prayer or preparation I need to make before I marry to ensure that my marriage is valid in the eyes of God?

You do not need to be married in order to have your child baptized. The only requirement in canon law is that there be a “founded hope” that you will raise the child as a Catholic (canon 868). As long as you have that intention then there is nothing to prevent the baptism from taking place.

The marriage of Catholics is governed not only by divine law but also by canon law (canon 1059). You stated that both you and your fiance are Catholic. The Church therefore expects you to be married in the Catholic Church. Only those marriages are valid which are contracted before the local ordinary, pastor, or a priest or deacon delegated by either of them (canon 1108 §1).

The only thing you need to do to have your marriage be valid is to have it in a Catholic church presided over by a Catholic bishop, priest, or deacon.

It is great that this man has helped bring you and your fiance back to Christ. That being said, there are serious matters of theological disagreement between Pentecostals and Catholics. As Catholics we believe marriage to be a sacrament, Pentecostals do not believe this. Why would two Catholics want to enter into a sacrament with someone presiding over it who does not believe it to be a sacrament?

Perhaps he could do a reading at the wedding or a prayer at the wedding reception as a way to recognize his role in your spiritual journey…

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