Does an emergency infant Baptism need to be completed later?

I’m sorry if this question has already been answered, because I couldn’t find it. Our infant was born three months early, so we had an emergency Baptism for her in the NICU. Her priest from our parish was there, as well as my parents and my husband’s parents. She is now four months old and we have had one priest tell us that we need to have the rest of the Baptism completed, and another priest has told us that it isn’t necessary. It would be great if we could get a definitive answer.


  1. Do we need to have the ceremonial part completed?
  2. Do we need new sponsors, or are the parents considered sponsors or proxis? My mother and my husband’s mother were the only Catholics there. My father is not Catholic. I know that family members are generally discouraged to be the sponsors, but it was an emergency situation so I’m just not sure!!!

There is no need to have the baptismal ceremony completed. It can be nice for a family to have the chance to properly celebrate the sacrament in a liturgical setting, but it is not absolutely necessary. The baptism itself is completed. And since the baptism was performed by a priest then there should be a proper record of the baptism in a baptismal register, thus there isn’t a need to be sure its recorded. However, you should still ask your local parish to note the emergency baptism in their baptismal register so that the location of proof of baptism isn’t lost/forgotten.

I would assume that the baptizing priest simply omitted any Godparents/sponsors for the baptism. Completing the ceremonial aspect of the baptism would allow for Godparents to be properly "installed.’

However, this completion of the ceremonial aspects of baptism is optional and up to you.

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