Conditional Baptism or not


I was baptized in a Southern Baptist church that has since disappeared. I am converting this Easter and need to take a baptismal certificate. A. Our church didnt keep certificate records like the Catholic church does. B. The church sold and disappeared probably 18 years or so ago.
Now my priest has said if I am sure I was baptized and baptized in the trinity formula I can bring in a statement from my mother that she witnessed my baptism. Baptist do use the trinity formula but this was 20-25 years ago that I was baptized. I am not even sure of the date- I am guessing between 1980-1984’ish. The RCIA director said I needed 2 witnesses and it needed to be notarized, but I only have my mom to say she witnessed it.

Would it be best to just ask for a conditional baptism? or not since there is only one baptism?:shrug:


Just provide the statement from your mother as your pastor asked for.


If the Baptist parish in which you were baptized is no more, you might wish to contact the state convention of the state in which you were baptized. I would be greatly surprised if any Protestant minister did not record his official acts somewhere. Likely the state convention can help you find the proper documentation.

If they cannot, then its wisest to defer to the judgment of the parish priest or the bishop who will be receiving you into the Church.

God bless, and welcome home.




We can only be baptized once. If you were validly baptized, as both you and your mother remember, it is done. Do as your pastor says regarding evidence.


I had my Baptism in a Baptist church about 22 years ago. That church has gone into a major decline. When I was joining the Catholic Church I was asked to bring in a certificate as well.

The short storie is: no records, no certificate, but the fact that I remember that it was done in the Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirt with the full emursion in water was proff enough for the Priste and RCIA group I was working with.

So, the Babtismin the baptist church may be acceptable as long as it meets proper form. The hard part for you is knowing if it was done in the proper form. My opinion is that the baptist church would use proper form with very few exceptions.


I was baptized as a Baptist. I consider myself blessed that I had the original certificate. I was almost twelve so I remember a lot and could have come up with some other evidence I guess. But if a Baptist church closes that should be that. There is no central church headquarters.

If the OP’s mother is a reliable witness then that is a good start. Also consider looking for some evidence of membership in the church, such as a letter stating such or a friend who was baptized at the same time.

I will be obnoxious here and recommend that if the OP can’t find solid evidence of baptism to request a conditional baptism. It is much better to have a verifiable record I think. I assume this will be okay with the priest.


I was baptized in a Baptist Church too and I have the document. I got a conditional baptism upon reception into the Catholic Church, though. Make sure the condition is actually said at your conditional baptism. I.e. “In case you are not baptized, I baptize you in the name of the Father, etc.”


You need not stress over this. This is not a decision that you yourself have to make. Simply provide the information your are asked for to the best of your ability and rely on your pastor to make the proper decision and take the appropriate action. It is understandable though that you would like to know in advance what the decision is.


Thanks everyone for your responses. I guess i am worried since the RCIA director/deacon told me i needed more than what our priest said i needed and the way the priest said “IF you are sure it was done correctly” so now i am second guessing it.
My mother is not much help since she is anti-catholic and thinks i am just having a mid-life crisis. Her response was to tell the priest that i was baptized a Baptist and they do it the CORRECT way (with emphasis on correct :rolleyes:)


Funny, my mom the Baptist said pretty much the same thing. :stuck_out_tongue:

You should remember being baptized in water and "in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit " part.


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