Pre-school child baptized Protestant; now what?

I’d like to know what the process and requirements is to get my pre-school child’s Presbyterian baptism accepted as Catholic and what the time limits are. I know the baptism is valid and if we wait 'til he’s an adult he’ll have to go through RCIA. But that couldn’t possibly be the case if a baby was baptized Presbyterian since unbaptised pre-schoolers could be regularized with a simple baptism.

There must be a streamlined process for acceptance for pre-school baptized outside the Church, even if it’s just the parents vowing to raise the baby Catholic and the child being registered as such. Does anyone have any information of this “baptismal blessing rite”? Does anyone know the age limit and other requirements for this “baptismal blessing rite”? I’d imagine that if one waited until the age of confirmation, one would have to go through the full RCIA so the age limit for the “baptismal blessing” must be earlier.

BTW, before anyone says that raising your child Catholic is one of the stipulations of marrying a non-Catholic…I was married at my wife’s Protestant Church. Due to invincible ignorance I didn’t know there was a difference since we were married in a church in the eyes of God or that I should have gotten a dispensation if I wanted to get married there anyway. I didn’t realize this until a few years into my marriage. Since I fell away after first communion, I knew the Eucharist was special but I had huge gaps in my knowledge such as “Jesus is God”, which got filled in my wife’s church and eventually I found my way home again. Yes, I’ll eventually get my marriage regularized and be able to receive the Eucharist again, but first things first. Our children need to come into the Church once my wife feels comfortable with it. Once she does, regularizing our marriage would be a relatively small, though time consuming step.

Dear friend,

You need to talk to your priest and fill him in on your situation. Should you have further questions of need more help, let me know. Just click on my name here and then on “contact.”

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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