Not having baptismal Certificate(worried)


hello I am a Catholic that is getting married soon on Sept… I have all my things needed except my baptismal certificate… I was baptized in the Lutheran Church as an infant. When I had called the church to get my certificate they told me that the church was vandalized and the records were lost… Apparently I have to talk to my deacon about a conditional baptism… I am very worried that this is gonna put a crux into the marriage process… Were doing pre-Cana in a couple days…


I believe you can be re-baptized conditionally.

I was when I joined the Church.

Hope this helps. :tiphat:


Are there any older family members who can sign an affidavit as witnesses to your baptism? I don’t think they have to have been there, just be able to swear that it occurred. Check with the deacon; it should be simple if you have such a witness.

Otherwise a conditional baptism should be fairly quick and easy if there is no way to prove the original baptism. The only objection to a conditional baptism is that we don’t want lightly disregard the validity of your original baptism.


ok thank you… This makes me feel better :slight_smile:


When I Joined The Catholic Church I Had Been Baptised As A Baptist, But Couldn’t Remember The Name Of The Church. The Secretary Had Me Sign An Affidavit Saying I Was Baptised In A Baptist Church In San Antonio When I Was 9 Years Old And My Mother Was Present To Confirm It. Mom Didn’t Have To Go Sign It. Just Me.that Was That. She Notorized It And It Was Official. Very Simple!

Don’t Worry. It’s No Big Deal!

P.s. Congradulations!


the diocese may have the records of the church microfilmed, it is worth a call to the diocesan archives. Otherwise, family members who were present can write a statement of the facts (your full name, birthdate, parents names, names of godparents, date of baptism, church, city and state of baptism, name of priest if anyone remembers it), the witnesses sign and have their signatures witnessed. Ask your priest if it needs to be notarized. This will be acceptable proof of baptism. What will be missing, that is on a new baptismal, is other sacraments received, but if you have those certificates, you are good. Keep all this in a safe place after this. your first communion and confirmation certificates may have the facts of baptism noted as well, although they are not proof.


You say you were Baptized as an infant in the Lutheran church and are now a Catholic. This tells me that you were received into full union with the Catholic Church thru RCIA? Or were you Baptized Lutheran and then raised Catholic shortly after?

If you attended RCIA then the parish church where you were received will have the documentation you provided them at that time and will have made a note in their Baptismal register of your Lutheran Baptism. Contact them. If you were raised Catholic as a child, contact the parish where you received your First Holy Communion or Confirmation. They too would have required proof of your Baptism for you to receive those Sacraments.


it is also worth contacting your local or state historical society, because they often microfilm church records and keep copies.


I am also worried too. I’m a Catholic & have my baptism & confirmation certificate.

My problem is my fiancee who was born a Catholic but have no knowledge of his baptism except that he was baptised in Belfast. His Mum left him at the age of 6 months after having him baptised.

He was subsequently brought up in an anglican church & got married. His ex-wife subsequently left him for another man. He is now a divorcee.

I understand that since his previous marriage Lacked Form (as he was married outside the Catholic church without permission), he is free to marry in the Catholic church provided he can submit proof of his baptism certificate.

I have been calling/emailing at least 30 priests in Belfast & yet I am unable to obtain his baptism certificate.

I am so worried that if I were to get a civil registry marriage, I would be considered committing adultery in the eyes of the Catholic church & can never receive communion & bring up my children as Catholics later on.

Any advice is deeply appreciated.


“I am so worried that if I were to get a civil registry marriage, I would be considered committing adultery in the eyes of the Catholic church & can never receive communion & bring up my children as Catholics later on.”

You are mostly correct. You could Baptized and bring your children up Catholic. If you enter into an invalid Marriage you would be prohibited from receiving Holy Communion. It wouold be best to set aside the Marriage plans until this is corrected. Have you written the diocese for Belfast?


After persistently searching for 3 months, I’ve finally found my fiancee’s baptism certificate.

We are now free to marry !

Question :-

Will we be getting a full wedding mass or service since my fiancee had never received Holy Communion or Confirmation in a Catholic church although he did receive communion in the Church of England.


Is he eligible now to receive Holy Communion or Confirmation? Does he wish to come back to the Catholic faith in the first place (no point if he doesn’t want to, of course)?

If so, you can ask your priest about the possibility of hubby receiving Communion and Confirmation before the wedding. He’d probably need to be prepared, for example by going to confession.


Not really … to him it doesn’t matter if we are married in a church or not. However, it is VERY IMPORTANT to me as I am a practising Catholic.

Assuming that he doesn’t want to embrace Catholism, we can still get married in a Catholic church right ?

I guess we will be having a full mass whether he is a practising Catholic or not …

Am I right ?


Yes, it’s fine for you to get married in a Catholic church if one of you is Catholic.

I believe it has to be a service and not a Mass if one of you isn’t Catholic, though. Doesn’t matter, you’ll be every bit as married either way.


He was baptised as a Catholic within a month from his birth. But when his mother left him within 6 months, his paternal grandparents brought him up within the Church of England.

So he is actually Catholic although not a practising one.

I guess it means we will be having a full mass right ?


Depends on the priest. In some dioceses they discourage a wedding Mass for couples of mixed faith, although your situation is kind of not one or the other. It is not absolutely forbidden to have a full Mass, but it will depend somewhat on whatever the rules are in your diocese and parish. In any case your husband to be would not be able to receive communion given the situation as you describe it.

Have you contacted the priest in the parish where you plan on getting married? Most dioceses will require a six month period between first contact and the wedding. Sometimes the wait is shortened or waived, but not often and only for good reasons.


Thanks for your advice. I guess it all depends on the priest that is marrying us.

Yes, I have contacted the parish 12 months beforehand. Last weekend, we attended the Marriage Preparation course.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit