New here and just had miscarriage...question?

I wasn’t sure where to post this, so hopefully this is alright.

I was 8 weeks pregnant and found out yesterday that the baby stopped growing at around 5-1/2 weeks. We saw a heartbeat a week ago, but the heart stopped. We have 5 children (7 actually—2 others lost due to m/c also) ranging from 18 down to 3 and we were really looking forward to this new blessing. After disgusing it with my husband, I decided the best thing to do was have a D & C (I really couldn’t handle waiting it out—physically or emotionally) and it was done last night. I feel a sense of guilt, even though I know the baby had died beforehand. I had thought of the possibility of having the baby’s remains, but it would have been very difficult, if not impossible, to save anything (the baby would have been less than the size of a grain of rice). I hate the thought that my baby was just disposed of along with other “biological waste.” I am very pro-life and this is all so ironic that this would happen on the anniversary of Roe vs. Wade.

We are so heartbroken and hope that there is a new baby for us in the near future. But for now, I’m just trying to grapple with the decision that we made. Was this a moral thing to do (I also had a D & C for my first m/c many years ago)?

Also, I asked for baptism for our baby in hopes that our baby’s soul would go to heaven. A friend of mine told me you can have a “baptism by desire or intention” Is this correct?

Thank you and I ask for your prayers as we mourn the loss of our little one.

God bless,

It is a perfectly acceptable medical procedure in the case of a natural miscarriage.

It is not a teaching of the Church, but one of those areas where you simply need to trust God. But a body that is definitely dead cannot be baptized.

I also had a miscarriage many years ago. My prayers are with you & your little one.

It is my knowledge that you can’t have a still-born baptized.

About the D&C though, you didn’t do anything wrong. I can’t imagine the pain you are going through at having lost a child. But the idea of the immorality behind abortions is that one is intentionally ending a human life. In your case, the human life was already taken by natural means. You were simply removing the remains. :hug1:

Thank you for your sweet replies. I’m hoping that I asked for baptism before the baby actually passed away (it probably happened in the past few days). I know that God is merciful and loves children…so I guess my hope will rest in that.

Thank you again.

God bless,

We had an almost identical miscarraige to yours. I waited, to miscarry naturally, even tho the baby was no longer living, and it became a medically emergency situiton, in which I had to go the ER for a D and C anyway (altho in the ER I managed to pass most of the tissue on my own).

I’m with you tho, the concept of a D and C for a pro-life person is difficult to swallow. I think those feelings of guilt over having it done are because we are programmed to think “D and C = abortion”. With a baby who has already passed into the loving arms of Jesus, that just isnt the case.

Praying for peace for your family, and rest for your little saints.

My sincere condolences on your loss. May God bless you and your family and your little ones. Know that they are in the arms of our Blessed Mother and in the lap of Jesus. They are a delight to the Saints in Heaven.

This issue was answered recently in the “Ask An Apologist” forum. This thread may help you.

I’m sorry for your loss. I’ll pray for your family and your lost baby.

You didn’t do anything wrong, the baby was already dead and in all actuality you were being a good steward of the body God has given you.

Dear daniden Im so very sorry for your loss.Others have replied
well to you that you, did nothing wrong with the D&C as sadly
baby had already passed away.To put your mind at rest about
your babys eternal salvation…God bless…

Baptism of Desire:
That doesn’t mean that only those who have been formally baptized can be saved. From very early on, the Church recognized that there are two other types of baptism besides the baptism of water.

The baptism of desire applies both to those who, while wishing to be baptized, die before receiving the sacrament and “Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or His Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do His will as they know it through the dictates of conscience” (Constitution on the Church, Second Vatican Council).

For the Fathers, St. Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787) sums up the
Catholic understanding of this doctrine “extra ecclesiam nulla salus” by
saying (De Baptismo, cap. 1): "It is de fide [of the faith and required to
be believed by all Catholics] that there are some men saved also by the
baptism of the Spirit *. In
this he expresses the teaching of all the Fathers, Doctors, popes, and
theologians, including St. Cyprian, St. Ambrose, St. Augustine, St.
Fulgentius, St. Thomas Aquinas (Summa Theologiae, IIIa, Q. 68, A.2), St.
Peter Canisius, St. Alphonsus de Liguori, Pope Innocent II, Pope Innocent
III, and Pope St. Pius X.
Specifically, the Council of Trent dogmatically recognized the
doctrine of Baptism of Desire when it defined:

Translatio ab eo statu, in quo homo nascitur filius primi Adae, in statum
gratiae … post evangelium promulgatum sine lavacro regenerationis AUT EIUS
VOTO fieri not potest. [The translation from that state in which man is born
a child of the first Adam, to the state of grace … cannot, since the
promulgation of the gospel, be effected except through the laver of
regeneration OR ITS DESIRE.] (Sessio Sexta de Iustificatione, Caput IV:
Insinuatur Descriptio Iustificationis Impii, et Modus Eius in Statu Gratiae)

St. Alphonsus Liguori in Book 6 of his Theologia Moralis, quotes this
passage and comments: “Therefore, it is de fide [dogmatic] that men are also
saved by Baptism of desire.” This dogma was confirmed by the Council of
Trent .*

I am so very sorry for your loss. You and your little one will be in my prayers.
Jesus loves all children. I have an extremely hard time believing He would not welcome your baby Home. :grouphug:

May God bless you during this difficult moment. You seem to be a good and obedient Catholic and you are concerned by the D&C. It is a mystery why birth and death happen. We don’t know the exact reason but believe this, nothing happens by accident for those who believe. God has a plan for you in all aspect of your life and his plan is for the good of you. It is sure hard to see this at this point in time, but God is greater than anything we could imagine. The vastness of his love is such that everything else pales by comparison.

Thanks God for your experience, no matter how disappointing and sad it is. Your unborn now is in a place where God desires it. Unborns and newborns are saints and Jesus loves little children. That thought should be an encouragement for you.

Pray to God for healing of the damaged emotion that may be caused by this experience and allow his love to flow unto you, your husband and family. Cherish your unborn baby with a loving memory knowing that he/she is with God and that you have nothing to worry about her/him.

May God bless you and comfort you right now.

The baptism of desire occurs when a person desires baptism, either explicitly or implicitly. A prenatal cannot desire baptism, even implicitly, because the prenatal does not have the use of reason. A person can only desire what he or she knows.

No one can be baptized after death.
Also, no one can be baptized by the desire for their baptism by someone else.

However, a non-formal baptism (but not one of desire) is still possible. The Virgin Mary received her Immaculate Conception (which includes all that is found in Baptism and more besides) in the first moment of her existence; and she did not receive this as a result of any preexisting desire on her part.

See this article of speculative theology on salvation available to prenatals and infants.

daniden be assured your baby is safe with Jesus.May Our Lord heal you in your emotional pain and concern for your lost child.God bless you both

Here is the views of two experts of Catholicism about the salvation of infants who die without baptism…

“The Church teaches that there also is Baptism of desire. Baptism of desire is an ardent wish to receive Baptism, and to do all that God has ordained for our salvation. We believe that if parents wish to have a baby Baptized, and the baby died before Baptism, their wish or desire is as good as a Sacramental Baptism for the Baby.”
Fr. Meinen

(About Rev. Dennis W. Meinen)
I prefer answering questions that a typical parishioner in a typical parish asks.

I was ordained to the priesthood in 1987. One year later I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. I am chaplain at a Catholic retirement/nursing home. I have a scooter (With the help of the Veterans) so I?m never at a desk! I am also involved in the Diocesan Office of Ministry to Persons With Disabilities and serve at our Catholic Hospital doing night call usually once a week. I write a column on disability for our Catholic newspaper and I try to tell how people can overcome obstacles to their disability. I freely admit to everyone that the ways of God are sometimes mysterious, but exciting.

About Sister Laurel M. O`Neal
I am a systematic theologian, religious Sister, hermit, and spiritual director. I am willing to answer all questions in the major areas of theology including Christology, ecclesiology, moral theology, and historical theology. My background (BA, MA, ThD) is strong in Scripture studies and I bring that as well as a commitment to providing genuinely pastoral perspectives to every answer. (Doctrinal content is never to be divorced from pastoral concerns).

"salvation always applies to the whole person, and not merely to a “soul” — as though human beings can exist as disembodied spirit. Each of us is embodied spirit, and this is a s true of babies as it is of the rest of us. While we are initiated into Christ through baptism as the ordinary means, the Church trusts that God can also bring to salvation, those who are not baptized. We simply reflect that while there are ordinary ways to come to share in the life of Christ, there are extraordinary ways as well, and God is not confined to those ways we know as ordinary.

Thus, babies who are aborted, miscarried, etc, can come to share in life with God (which is what heaven is really all about) without actual baptism. We can't say much more about it than this however. We can say that they do not develop the degree of capacity for or openness to God that one tends to develop throughout a life of giving oneself to God, but evenso, we can say their joy is complete.

     Limbo, by the way, was never more than a theological construct developed when it was not recognized that baptism was the ordinary means to coming to share in life with Christ. The need for baptism was elevated beyond what was reasonable (given that the majority of human beings are NOT baptized), and a mechanistic approach to washing away the stain of original sin made it impossible to conceive of unbaptized babies going to heaven. Limbo was never actually church teaching, and today the problem is solved in a different way, namely, by recognizing 1) what a gift baptism is, and 2) recognizing that God's will to salvation is universal and that his love is capable of empowering and reconciling those who never had a chance to be baptized.

  The tension between these two poles needs to be maintained. To do otherwise is to denigrate baptism on the one hand, or, to make God subject to human failure (we do miscarry, abort, fail to baptize, bring to salutary repentance, or effectively proclaim the love of God to others). So, on the one hand, baptism is an extraordinary gift and the ordinary way human beings come to share in God's life in Christ. On the other hand, when human beings fail, God can work to bring others to himself through extraordinary means which do not involve baptism."

Sister Laurel

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