Valid Baptism?


This priest I know pretty well baptized my nephew. He is extremely orthodox and so I was surprised when he baptized my nephew, “In the name of the Father, in the name of the Son, and in the name of the Holy Spirit.”

Is that valid?


What were you expecting him to say? :confused:

The Trinitarian Formula is the only valid way to do Baptism.


I agree Trinitarian is the only way to baptize. It’s a minor thing … I expected him to say, “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.”


Either way it’s the same thing.


I sure hope so!


The necessary words are "N., I baptize you In the name of - Father - Son - Holy Spirit - Amen.

The priest can make it work using any grammar he wants. It’s a Sacrament; not an incantation. :wink:


Yes, it is a valid baptism.


As long as he used water it is valid, no doubt.


Water and the correct understanding of the Trinity


But, the priest need to follow the words in the book and the rubrics in the book. :thumbsup:


Even if he does not have the book with him and cannot read the rubrics, or is a Byzantine or even Orthodox priest, as long as he uses water and the formula is “I baptize you in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit”, OR "In the name of the Father, in the name of the Son, and in the name of the Holy Spirit."it is a valid Sacrament. In fact, it is valid even if a laymen is the one baptizing as long as the accidents (water) and the form “I baptize you in the name of…” are correct.




Its not hope. Its a fact.




He should, yes, but if he alters the words, but the meaning, intention, and understanding of the Trinity stays the same, then it is still valid, but illicit.


Bingo is a different Catholic sacrament!:smiley:


With all do respect, derision is not a virtue. :wink: I realize such comments are in jest, and I take no real offense. Nonetheless, I maintain my question is a legitimate one because it concerns the addition of words that could change the meaning of what is spoken, not grammar. “In what way?” Well, I’m glad you asked!

For example, the words of Consecration are by no means incantatory, yet if the priest does not say them correctly (barring simple mispronunciations et al.) the Sacrament is invalid. Therefore, what form is minimally necessary for the valid administration of Baptism? What adaptations are tolerable, even if either reprehensible or just plain dumb?

My question stems from the theological significance of the form this priest used: if, by saying “in the name of the Father, in the name of the Son, and in the name of the Holy Spirit,” the priest has introduced a substantial change to the meaning of the words by separating the divine Nature (q.v. New Advent Encyclopedia, Form of Baptism), what does that do to the Sacrament?

The “sensus fidelium,” as it were, suggests that I have nothing to be concerned about - and I’m glad for that confidence.

Nevertheless, my question still stands. Is it correct to say that the manifestation of intention and purpose [of the act] (“I baptize you”), combined with the mention of the three Persons of the Trinity [of course in conjunction with the use of “living water” (either pouring or immersion)], no matter the intervening content, satisfies the necessary conditions for valid (but not necessarily licit) conferral of the Sacrament?

If the answer is yes, then one could argue that, “In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, I baptize you,” is valid. Likewise, “I baptize you in the name of the FATHER, creator of all the living, his only SON, Jesus Christ our Lord, and the HOLY SPIRIT, the bond of their love,” can also be argued as valid, though highly illicit.

Baptism is not an incantation. Yet, if the form and matter are sufficiently wrong Ecclesia Supplet doesn’t even apply. Thank you for your interest in my question.


:rotfl: Thanks to your comment, I’m having to explain to people why I keep breaking out into laughter for no apparent reason.



In the Byzantine rite, the formula is “The servant of God, N., is baptized in the name of…” So, the words “I baptize” can be substituted for this and it would still be valid. :thumbsup:


The place we find the source of the wording is the Latin, which is,

“N, Ego te baptizo in nomine Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sancti.”

Literally translated, it says, “N, I thee baptize in name Father, and Son, and Ghost Sacred.”

Obviously in English, that sounds really awkward, so to retain the sense while at the same time conveying the meaning, the minister may use similar words that mean the same thing, and this doesn’t cause the Sacrament to become illicit or invalid.

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