Valid Baptisms?


Does anyone have a list of which denominations have valid baptisms, according to the church?


Isn't any baptism "In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen" valid? Therefore Oneness Pentecostal, Mormon, and Jehovah Witnesses or any other non-trinitarian denominations baptisms are NOT valid.


There are those who nowadays for the sake of “political correctness” use a modified trinitarian formula. They either make the persons of the Trinity feminine, or gender neutral (creator, redeemer, sanctifier). Both are also invalid.


Okay, that makes sense, but wouldn’t Mormon baptisms be valid then, because they baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit?


The reason Mormon baptism is invalid is because they have a completely different understanding of the Trinity which does not match Christian theology. Mormon theology is more pagan, polytheistic; they believe men will become gods who rule their own planets in outer space, etc.



Archdiocese of Santa Fe:

Archdiocese of Davenport:,%20Doubtful,%20Invalid%20Baptisms.pdf

Baptism canons (Latin Church):

LDS Baptism:


Any sacrament requires three things: 1) matter 2) form 3) intention to do what the Church does. For Baptism, the matter is water. The form is “I baptize thee in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” The intention part is the hard one. I think as long as the first two elements are present, the third can be assumed. This is why even a pagan could administer a valid Baptism. Probably, the only minister who could mess up a baptism is a fallen-away Catholic because they would try to fool around with one or more elements, ie, they know just enough about Catholicism to be dangerous.


The intention is just that the one pouring the water and saying the words intends to do whatever it is that the Church wants, even if they don’t know what that is.


[quote="silentknight81, post:7, topic:287502"]
Any sacrament requires three things: 1) matter 2) form 3) intention to do what the Church does.


Usually, intention is grouped under form as a subsection. However, intention is such a complicated part (or at least can be) that I think it's a good idea to list it as you did (as separate from intention).

I actually place intention under disposition. I relate disposition to factors such as who is providing the sacrament (priest? bishop? laity?), the intention, disposition of the one receiving the sacrament (someone that has not yet been baptized cannot validly have a Confession), etc.

Another important factor is that the water must flow over the person's head in some manner.

Here is a post I did over the issue:

I left out the fact in the post that some ecclesiastical communities, such as Mormons, have such a different concept when they baptize "in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit" that they are actually meaning different things by those names and, therefore, have an invalid sacrament.


I have to admit that I’m surprised to read that Moravian Baptism is “doubtful”. They have a Trinitarian baptism with water.


No, Mormons do not believe and confess in the Trinity but instead in a triad in which God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are three separate beings…

We also know that Joseph Smith was a false prophet from his own personal witness of his encounter with God the Father and Jesus the son – but I am not sure if he just made up this encounter, imagined it, or so forth. I do know from facts of history that Mr. Joseph Smith was not accepted within the various circles of protestantism.

That said they are usually a very pious people and have been taught their Mormon doctrine well. It has been my experience that because of their strong faith - they tend to not question our objections - so at times I tell them why I am a Catholic and why I converted from the Southern Baptist Church - perhaps through listening something I say may plant a seed.

Likewise I do not see them at a damned people - even without a valid baptism – based on our catholic belief of Baptism by desire


Mennonite, Moravian, Pentecostal, and Seventh Day Adventist are decided individually because of variations.


I’ve always still wondered about the common Baptist and Evangelical practice of dunking the person under water (full submersion baptism) after the names of the Trinity are invoked.

Typically one of their baptisms goes:

“I baptise you my brother/sister, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”

While moving person into water, “We are buried with Christ in baptism,” (lowered into water) and raised to walk in newness of life". (brought back up from water).

Rarely are the words of the Trinity and the action of Baptism united, and rarely is the person’s name spoken.


An interesting explanation of the Catholic teaching on baptism by desire (which means perfect charity or perfect contrition) was posted by Rev. Anthony Cekada, as expressed by theologian Father Felix Cappelo:“The term baptism of the spirit or of desire flaminis seu desiderii] means an act of perfect charity or contrition, with at least an implicit wish for the sacrament. ‘For the heart of a man,’ says St. Thomas, ‘is moved by the Holy Ghost to believe and love God, and repent of its sins.’ “Thus, baptism of desire serves to justify a man in place of baptism properly speaking, for (as our treatise On Penance says) outside of the sacrament actually received, perfect contrition is in itself per se] an immediate disposition for justification…

“… baptism of desire in voto] takes place when at least the implicit intention to receive it [the sacrament of baptism] is present; this intention is contained in the act of charity or contrition, insofar as it is a general will to fulfill all divine commandments and to employ all means divinely instituted as necessary for salvation.” (Tractatus Canonico-Moralis de Sacramentis, 4th ed. [Rome: 1945] 1:110, 112.)


The person’s name need not be spoken, and the action of baptism only needs to be related, not united.


In the book that our RCIA director had, Evangelical Baptists' baptisms (along with the usual Mormon, Oneness Pentecostal, etc.) were not valid - but then maybe the situation in Canada is different than the US. (I don't remember the name of the book, but I know it was an official book for the Church, and she confirmed the info. with the archdiocese to be sure).


Valid baptism is baptized in trinitarian Formula. If in case that a person is baptized in the trinitarian protestant church, he or she is still subject for validation in the Catholic Church if he want to enter the Catholic Church.


I have read this too in the online Catholic encyclopedia. I have heard conflicting things from Priests though.


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