God parents not involved with my son's life. Would this bother you?


#1

Hello

I am new to posting but not new to this site. I have been a long time lurker.

The church I go to were the ones to find god parents to my son. They are deeply involved with the church. The godfather is the one that hands out communion at mass and the god mother even works for the rectory. A few things have bothered me. After the baptism, I only heard from the godfather once about 7 months later. Never again. Even when they said they would be godparents they never asked questions about my son or inquire when his birthday is. I know it’s a 2 way street and I tried reaching out a few times but I never heard from them. It kind of bothers me that they stood up to be godparents but haven’t taken a step in the roll of being a god parent. If I had known this, I could of had a friend of the family be godfather. He would of been more active in the roll even though he isn’t religious.

This kind of sadens me but I know in this day and age this is common.


#2

Why did the church pick the God Parents? I've never heard of anyone not picking their own. Where you brand new to the church with no Catholic contacts/friends?

Personally, I wouldn't expect strangers to stay involved in your child's life. At most, I would expect a phone call when they figure your child should be signed up for his next set of sacaraments?

Have you invited them over to spend time with the family? It would be odd for adult strangers to ask to spend time with your child...

Now, this would bother me, if my sister, who is the God Mother to my boys decided not to be involved in their lives. Not just from a Got Parent pov, but from a family point of view...


#3

I’m sorry to hear that your son’s godparents are not taking a more active role in your son’s life. I’m godfather to one of my best friend’s son. I’m curious as to what your expectations are with regard to the extent of the godparents’ involvement in your son’s life. Were you good friends with the godparents before they became godparents? In my personal opinion, it’s far better to find godparents that you and your spouse already have a good relationships with rather than someone who’s simply involved with the church but doesn’t know you that well personally.

For me personally, after attending my godson’s baptism, I still inquire about my godson to see how he’s doing. And my friend sends me pictures of my godson. I absolutely agree that it’s a two-way street, but it’s definitely easier if you’re already good friends with the person.

Good luck!


#4

I’ve never heard of this either. The choice of the Godparent is meant to be the person who would step forward to ensure that the Godchild was raised in the Catholic faith if the parents were deceased or unable to do so. That would generally mean a close family member or a very trusted friend, not just a virtual stranger who happens to be Catholic.


#5

[quote="PattiDay, post:4, topic:224405"]
I've never heard of this either. The choice of the Godparent is meant to be the person who would step forward to ensure that the Godchild was raised in the Catholic faith if the parents were deceased or unable to do so. That would generally mean a close family member or a very trusted friend, not just a virtual stranger who happens to be Catholic.

[/quote]

I know no one catholic except one person who isn't practicing and he really has a lot of issues he is dealing with. The church said they would have someone stand in to be godparents for anyone who doesn't have anyone. This is all good to know so I don't feel bad never talking to them again. I thought we would be on a friendly basis, hello how are you type deal. Not ever hear from them again. That's the impression I got at the baptism class. They even asked how many people here have their godparents in their lives. My sister had godparent from the church that she didn't know and they tried to stay active in her children's lives but my sister just ignored them. Years later she considers herself a nonbeliever in god so I didn't have her.


#6

[quote="faithfully, post:2, topic:224405"]
Why did the church pick the God Parents? I've never heard of anyone not picking their own. Where you brand new to the church with no Catholic contacts/friends?

Personally, I wouldn't expect strangers to stay involved in your child's life. At most, I would expect a phone call when they figure your child should be signed up for his next set of sacaraments?

Have you invited them over to spend time with the family? It would be odd for adult strangers to ask to spend time with your child...

Now, this would bother me, if my sister, who is the God Mother to my boys decided not to be involved in their lives. Not just from a Got Parent pov, but from a family point of view...

[/quote]

I am new to the church and I don't know anyone catholic. I have no family or friends. My husband is not catholic. I have a sister but we do not get along and she doesn't believe in god anyway. I don't want a stranger hanging around my child but I thought we would be more on a friendly basis. Once in a while a phone call to say hello. That's all I am looking for. More for someone to ask how the family is doing. I haven't asked them to come over, I just want a phone call once in a while or a card in the mail for xmas. something like that. I think I am just looking for some sort of friendship. Nothing close but nothing to the point of where you never hear from anyone again. This is all good to know, I don't feel bad for no communication.


#7

[quote="PattiDay, post:4, topic:224405"]
I've never heard of this either. The choice of the Godparent is meant to be the person who would step forward to ensure that the Godchild was raised in the Catholic faith if the parents were deceased or unable to do so. That would generally mean a close family member or a very trusted friend, not just a virtual stranger who happens to be Catholic.

[/quote]

The church will ask for volunteers to be a godparent for those who don't have anyone to be a godparent. Happens all the time. My church does this. All catholic churches do this. I never volunteered though. My church got someone to be godparents to my son also. They won't baptize a child without a godparent. I asked them, I would of prefered not to have a godparent that I didn't know.


#8

Hello everyone and peace. oh and Happy New Year:extrahappy::extrahappy:
When I read the title of your post I was gonna say "no it would’nt bother me any"
Then I remembered I don’t have any kids. :shrug: Then I read your post. No thats not the way god parents should be. My god parents were involved with me through Baptisim, first communion, confirmation. I’m not married but they would’ve been there. Also, I’m god parent to my friends daughter and my niece and my nephew. And yeah I’m involved with them more then my other neices and nephews. For me thiers a special connection with them. Praying for you. and Happy New Year.:thumbsup:
jesus g


#9

This is very unfortunate but your childs Godparents (chosen at the church) are probably Godparents to a bunch of kids.as it is common nowadays that people move away from family and live elsewhere. I'm sure the Godparents aren't even realizing how upsetting this is for you.

I have to say that I am very close to my Godmother. She just turned 97 yrs old and has been a good woman. She always had novenas said for me (especially in my rebellious days of not going to Mass).

My son's sponsor is my old pew buddies son. She was also a wonderful woman and instrumental (along with my Godmother) in getting me back to Mass. I actually met her at Mass and that's how her son became my son's sponsor. I'm rambling ;).

Here's the point: I would really make a good effort and reach out to his Godparents. Invite them for dinner, send cards for their birthdays. Make sure he gives them a call every now and then. If they don't respond well, then they are missing out.

And don't be surprised if someday sitting next to you is your very own "pew buddy" that becomes extended family and close to your son and that family becomes more like Godparents to him. :thumbsup:


#10

My heart bleeds for you because although I have no children, I was always concerend that if I did, who would be the God parents.

In my mind, a God parent should first of all be a devout Catholic. So that unfortunately eliminates most Catholics even the ones that sit in the church every Sunday.

Then there is the question of spending quality time together when we live in such a fast pace world.

Your son's God parents probably felt a moral obligation to say 'yes' because if no one stepped up to the plate that would mean your son could not be baptized. In my mind most people end up having token God parents. Just one more struggle for us Catholics

CM


#11

[quote="Lapis, post:1, topic:224405"]
Hello

I am new to posting but not new to this site. I have been a long time lurker.

The church I go to were the ones to find god parents to my son. They are deeply involved with the church. The godfather is the one that hands out communion at mass and the god mother even works for the rectory. A few things have bothered me. After the baptism, I only heard from the godfather once about 7 months later. Never again. Even when they said they would be godparents they never asked questions about my son or inquire when his birthday is. I .

[/quote]

why did the parish find godparents for your son? I presume since we run into this a lot, that you did not know anyone among your own family and friends who could fill this role and meet the requirements, so they generously stepped forward. This happens to me at least once a year, either a godparent simply does not show up to baptism so I step in as proxy, or for whatever reason at the last minute there are no godparents. In only one such case have the parents ever contacted me after baptism, even acknowledged my participation. I give a small gift, the same for all, give them my contact information, send cards on baptismal anniversaries as I do for all the newly baptized inviting them to parish programs as their children progress in age, but have never received any direct response. I only have that contact information because I work in the office, the parents themselves never even give me contact info so I could not call them in any case.

I have only once been invited to share in any celebration after the ceremony, although I don't expect to be, and unless the child is in RCIA never even get to hold the baby or get to know the child. I cannot intrude where the parents do not invite me.

As for my own children none of the goparents are still involved in their lives, partly because of our own poor choices (although we could not have predicted that so many family members would later leave the faith). Where we chose friends and neighbors those relationships died after time and distance so did the godparent relationship.

There is also a cultural expectation here that the role of padrino/madrina has a deeper connotation than simply the spiritual and canonical role of godparent, including financial support, which I am not in a position to provide, and implies the padrino will alreadly be a part of the life of the extended family and hence the child. Since this is not the case when godparents are simply assigned, as often happens, the godparent/padrino relationship does not develop either.


#12

It would bother me some, but to be honest, probably not much.

When my parents baptized my older siblings, they chose Godparents the way most people do, and those people never had a "godparent" relationship with my siblings. My parents were disappointed. So when I was baptized, they decided that "everyone at the baptism" would be my Godparents (I was baptized in their living room, and no you're not actually allowed to choose "everyone present" as Godparents, but that's a whole 'nother issue), and as you might guess, I've never had a Godparent-like contact with one of them. Ever. And my parents chose close friends who were strong in their faith for all of three of their kids' baptisms.

My situation may not be typical, but I think it IS typical for Godparents not to have a godparent-like relationship with their Godchildren. Even when it's family, even if they acknowledge the special relationship, they rarely actually encourage the children in their faith, or help the parents do the job of teaching the faith. And it's also common to choose friends as Godparents, and then to move or drift away so that you don't have contact with them when the child is old enough to have a relationship.

These things aren't good, or how they should should be. But it is reality for many Catholics. Perhaps that can be a consolation to you, that aside from how they were chosen, the rest of it isn't really all that unusual.

Dh and I have tried to do better as Godparents to our Godchildren, and we chose our kids' Godparents with the hope that they would do better as well. So far, they are. But you know what? If they weren't, our children's faith instruction wouldn't be any different, and while having a "special relationship" is nice, it really isn't the goal of a Godparent. The more the parents teach the faith to their children, the less the Godparents are needed.

Actually, the most useful thing we do for our Godchildren is pray for them regularly. We didn't used to do it, but the people who are our kids' Godparents kept telling my kids that they pray for them every day, that it finally stuck in my own head, and now, when our family says night prayers, we always include a prayer for our Godchildren.

It's possible that this couple DOES pray for their Godchildren (and it's possible they have others like yours, to whom they were assigned by the Pastor). But since you don't know, you CAN pray for THEM. You could even let them know - ie. send them a Christmas Card each year, saying that you pray for them, the Godparents of your child, every night, kind of as a hint. Or have your child do it when (s)he is old enough.

Or just let it be, knowing that your situation isn't all that unusual after all, and just be that parent that teaches the faith really well anyway. And then work on getting to know some Catholics as friends, so that Godparents or not, they can encourage you and your family in your faith in general.


#13

Thank you.

It was very helpful to read your replies.


#14

It happens frequently enough that someone chosen as a godparent doesn't stay involved in the child's life. I am godmother to a friend's child who we were very close to at the time of her birth. Now we live in different towns and haven't kept in touch well. This thread is actually a reminder to me to call them!

In your situation, I would just be friendly with the couple/godparents. Say hi when you see them in church, engage in general conversation. The role of god parent is not what it once was with those adults often also considered to be surragate paretns or actually in charge of the child's faith formation--ie, teaching him themselves.

Start looking for other firends within the church -- other familes in the nursery/cry room, at parish coffees or dinners. Later when you son starts CCD, become friendly with the parents of the other students in his class. In this way you will build up a Catholic "family" for you and your son to be part of even if his godparents never becomes closer.


#15

I am a Godmother to my niece and nephew. Their mother and grandmother picked me for the duties knowing I would do my best to set a good example.

I do my best to be involved with them, and set a good example as well even with my busy schedule.

I am a grown woman, and still keep in touch some with my Godparents but they both live far away now as well. I even chose my Godmother to be my confirmation sponsor too.


#16

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