God-parents, hands, and rite of Baptism


#1

Can anyone explain what is the meaning of, during Baptism, the god-parents putting their hands upon the person being baptized? In case of Baptism by immersion, is this ignored?


#2

[quote="Ora_et_Labora, post:1, topic:321488"]
Can anyone explain what is the meaning of, during Baptism, the god-parents putting their hands upon the person being baptized? In case of Baptism by immersion, is this ignored?

[/quote]

It's done even with immersion according to my copy of the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults.

I have never stopped to think about the meaning. I have to admit that I can't recall ever seeing that in Baptism for Infants. Perhaps in both that gesture represents the community's support, but with babies whoever holds them over the font represents the community.


#3

It is also done during Confirmation.


#4

[quote="Ora_et_Labora, post:3, topic:321488"]
It is also done during Confirmation.

[/quote]

If I may add my unsolicited :twocents: ... IIRC (and I might have a memory lapse here), during Confirmation the sponsor puts a hand on the person's shoulder. In the case of infant baptism, however, the fact that the infant is physically held (usually by the godmother) would seem to be the equivalent. FWIW, I seem to think Phemie is right (as usual) about the significance. :)


#5

[quote="malphono, post:4, topic:321488"]
If I may add my unsolicited :twocents: ... IIRC (and I might have a memory lapse here), during Confirmation the sponsor puts a hand on the person's shoulder. In the case of infant baptism, however, the fact that the infant is physically held (usually by the godmother) would seem to be the equivalent. FWIW, I seem to think Phemie is right (as usual) about the significance. :)

[/quote]

As our lil 'un will be immersed, the significance of this came to my mind.


#6

[quote="Ora_et_Labora, post:5, topic:321488"]
As our lil 'un will be immersed, the significance of this came to my mind.

[/quote]

Muitas felicidades. :) When will the baptism take place?


#7

[quote="malphono, post:6, topic:321488"]
Muitas felicidades. :) When will the baptism take place?

[/quote]

Sometime in June, God willing. But first she needs to be coaxed into leaving the womb. Her 40 weeks are already up :-P


#8

[quote="Ora_et_Labora, post:5, topic:321488"]
As our lil 'un will be immersed, the significance of this came to my mind.

[/quote]

I'm going to have to look at the Infant baptism rite again. It's never been my experience that a godparent held the infant for a baptism, and for an immersion one it's always Fr. holding the baby although it's encouraged to have the mother lift the child from the font after the last immersion - in practice that's a lot easier said than done.

The tradition where I grew up was to have a woman other than the godmother as the 'porteuse', IOW, the person who held the baby at the baptism. In my case, back in 1953, it was my aunt and her two oldest children were my godmother (age 12) and godfather (age 10).


#9

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