What makes a Baptism Catholic


#1

Please help me to understand this better.

By virtue of our Catholic baptism, we become Catholic and are obliged to follow certain rules that are not binding on baptized non-Catholic Christians, for example to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days and to marry according to Catholic form.

What is it that makes the baptism “Catholic” vs a valid non-Catholic Christian baptism? Is it the faith of the minister conducting the baptism? The location only? The intention of the parents?

Suppose an infant receives an emergency baptism in the hospital by a hospital staff member. Would the infant be Catholic or not or would it depend on the circumstances?

Thank you and God bless.


#2

My understanding is that it depends on whether or not the Catholic faith is professed. This would include the faith of the minister (if he was baptizing into a non-Catholic Christianity) and also the intention of the parents (they probably have no intention to raise their child in the Catholic faith if they themselves don’t profess it.)

Edit: I don’t mean that a non-Catholic spouse who agrees to raise their children Catholic has no intention of raising the child in the Catholic faith…I was thinking of, for example two Baptists who are happy to have little Baptist children and would likely find it very bothersome if Catholicism was added to the mix.

Edit edit: Maybe insert “Calvinist” instead of “Baptist” since Calvinists are more likely to baptize an infant. :stuck_out_tongue:


#3

As a recent convert (Easter 2013), I may be wrong, and not sure I totally understand the question but …
I was baptized protestant in the trinity. This was totally accepted in the Catholic Church. What made me Catholic was the rites, and sacraments after attending a year of RCIA, not the Baptism.
Catholics whom are baptized in the Catholic Church are, yes, Catholic, but then they undertake the learnings of the Church, and have first Communion and Confirmation. I think it’s the teaching’s, and the “pledge” to faithfulness in all the teaching of the Church that makes a Catholic, Catholic.


#4

The intention should be to give the child a Catholic baptism. Ordinarily this means that the baptism will be sought from the parish (emergencies excepted) and the parents will either both be Catholic, or they can at least agree that the child should be raised in the Catholic faith.

If one is baptized into the profession of the Catholic faith, it is a Catholic baptism. This person is already Catholic and may receive Confession and Eucharist when they are of age.

If one is baptized into the profession of a non-Catholic Christian faith, it is valid but is not a specifically Catholic baptism. This person is a non-Catholic Christian who will need to complete their initiation into the Catholic faith before participating fully in the sacraments.


#5

Non-Catholics are formally received into the Church by a profession of faith. That profession of faith happens within the Catholic ceremony of baptism, and so those who are baptized in the Catholic ceremony are formally received into the Church immediately without the extra step. It’s logically two separate occurrences, which are intended to occur simultaneously even though that doesn’t always happen.


#6

If a baptism occurs with water (pouring or submerging) while saying “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit”, the Church considers that such an act is a sacrament.

Thus, if someone is baptized in most denominational churches using that formula, even though that denomination (and/or the person baptizing) does not understand it to be a sacrament as the Church considers sacraments, but they intend to do what the Church does, then that person, should they decide to join the Catholic Church, will not be baptized again. The first one “counted” - that is, the Church recognizes it as a sacramental act.

There are a few denominations which the Church does not recognize, and other organizations the Church does not consider to be within the term “Christian” (e.g. the LDS church). But they are few.

There is but one baptism. and the evangelical community down the street can and does do the same thing as the Church.

As to the emergency baptism in the hospital; those baptizing the child might consider the child to be a Protestant evangelical; but Christ considers the child to be His own.


#7

If a non-Catholic Christian was baptized in the Trinity formula and later wishes to be in Communion with the Catholic Church he must first receive instruction and then agree to the complete revelation of Christ as handed down to us through the twelve apostles whom Christ commissioned to do so.
If the infant is the child of Catholic parents and the Baptism was performed in the Trinity formula the child would be Catholic.
Peace, Carlan


#8

This. There is only one baptism: “I, then, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to live in a manner worthy of the call you have received, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another through love, striving to preserve the unity of the spirit through the bond of peace: one body and one Spirit, as you were also called to the one hope of your call; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all” (Eph 4:1-6) Either someone is baptized or they’re not. We consider other Christians, once validly baptized, to be separated brethren. They lack communion with the ecclesiastical governance of the one true Apostolic Church, but they are just as baptized as any of us, just as someone baptized in an emergency in a hospital is just as baptized as if he or she was baptized by the Pope.

As for those who are baptized later in life, what of it? “When those who had started about five o’clock came, each received the usual daily wage. So when the first came, they thought that they would receive more, but each of them also got the usual wagethus, the last will be first, and the first will be last”. Matt. 20:9-10,16


#9

I understand there’s only one baptism and that an emergency baptism or a baptism at a Protestant church is valid sacrament.

My husband and I are Catholic and we would want a staff member to baptize our baby in the hospital if it’s an emergency. I know that, if this were to happen, she would be validly baptized.

I guess I’m not clear on exactly what happens that makes some people who receive baptism bound by Church law and considered Catholic and others who receive baptism not Catholic. The profession of faith answer seems to ring true to me. Would parents of an infant baptized as an emergency later go to a Church to do the profession of faith on behalf of the child?


#10

The Trinitarian formula must be used for baptizing in the Catholic faith. Pouring ordinary **water **on the forehead of the person to be baptized, and say while pouring “I baptize thee in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” (as per the Catechism of the Catholic Church). Can be performed by the usual minister of Baptism, but in case of danger of impending death, anyone else may and should baptize. (CCC).

Apparently, other Christian faiths omit the Trinity and may say “I baptize you in the name of Jesus Christ” or “Be baptized in the Holy Spirit” and thus, not be considered a valid baptism because the Trinitarian formula was not said.

Peace.

+JMJ+


#11

[quote="nodito, post:9, topic:335720"]
I understand there's only one baptism and that an emergency baptism or a baptism at a Protestant church is valid sacrament.

My husband and I are Catholic and we would want a staff member to baptize our baby in the hospital if it's an emergency. I know that, if this were to happen, she would be validly baptized.

I guess I'm not clear on exactly what happens that makes some people who receive baptism bound by Church law and considered Catholic and others who receive baptism not Catholic. The profession of faith answer seems to ring true to me. Would parents of an infant baptized as an emergency later go to a Church to do the profession of faith on behalf of the child?

[/quote]

Yes. When an emergency baptism happens and the parents are Catholic, the parents and the person who administered the baptism are required to inform the pastor of the parents' parish as to what happened so the baptism can be recorded in the parish register. If and when the emergency subsides and the child recovers, the parents would bring the child to the Church for something called "supplying the ceremonies", by which the rest of the official rite, including the profession of faith and the formal reception of the child into the Church, would be conducted.


#12

Please tell us who you mean. What you said is too vague.

I was a baptised Methodist (using water and the Trinitarian formula) and when I converted that baptism was considered valid.


#13

Thistle:

They include Jehovah's Witnesses, Pentecostals, and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Peace.

+JMJ+


#14

Okay but the mainstream non-Catholic Christian communities normally use water and the Trinitarian formula.
The groups you mention are not Christian.


#15

[quote="jmj777, post:13, topic:335720"]
Thistle:

They include Jehovah's Witnesses, Pentecostals, and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Peace.

+JMJ+

[/quote]

This should be qualified to say "some Pentecostals." In my experience, most Pentecostals are strongly Trinitarian in their beliefs and use the Trinitarian formula in baptism. Also, it is my understanding that the LDS use the words of the Trinitarian formula, but they do not validly baptize because their beliefs are clearly not Trinitarian.


#16

[quote="RyanBlack, post:15, topic:335720"]
Also, it is my understanding that the LDS use the words of the Trinitarian formula, but they do not validly baptize because their beliefs are clearly not Trinitarian.

[/quote]

That was politely put. Thank you, and thank you for not making a long explanation. Too easy to side track.


#17

I'm not sure the OP's question has been answered.

If I'm a nurse in the hospital and the child of an Anglican couple is ill and the parents ask me to baptize him, will the child be baptized Catholic because I'm Catholic or will he be Anglican because that is the parents' religion? I was told that by virtue of the fact that I'm Catholic the child will be Catholic. What if my intent is that the child will be Anglican as I baptize him validly with the Trinitarian formula?

True story, told to me by the priest himself:

He was doing his bi-monthly visit to a mission and there was a snowstorm. An Anglican family had gathered for the baptism of a child but, because of the storm, the Anglican priest was unable to get there for the service that Sunday. He called our priest to see if he would be willing to accommodate the family, many of whom had flown in for the occasion, and baptize the child. Father did so with the ceremony found in the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. Is the child Catholic or Anglican?


#18

[quote="Phemie, post:17, topic:335720"]
I'm not sure the OP's question has been answered.

If I'm a nurse in the hospital and the child of an Anglican couple is ill and the parents ask me to baptize him, will the child be baptized Catholic because I'm Catholic or will he be Anglican because that is the parents' religion? I was told that by virtue of the fact that I'm Catholic the child will be Catholic. What if my intent is that the child will be Anglican as I baptize him validly with the Trinitarian formula?

True story, told to me by the priest himself:

He was doing his bi-monthly visit to a mission and there was a snowstorm. An Anglican family had gathered for the baptism of a child but, because of the storm, the Anglican priest was unable to get there for the service that Sunday. He called our priest to see if he would be willing to accommodate the family, many of whom had flown in for the occasion, and baptize the child. Father did so with the ceremony found in the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. Is the child Catholic or Anglican?

[/quote]

The child is Anglican, as he also would be if you had done an emergency baptism.


#19

[quote="aemcpa, post:18, topic:335720"]
The child is Anglican, as he also would be if you had done an emergency baptism.

[/quote]

That's what I think, but not everyone agrees and I've never seen any official document that addresses it.


#20

[quote="Phemie, post:17, topic:335720"]
I'm not sure the OP's question has been answered.

If I'm a nurse in the hospital and the child of an Anglican couple is ill and the parents ask me to baptize him, will the child be baptized Catholic because I'm Catholic or will he be Anglican because that is the parents' religion? I was told that by virtue of the fact that I'm Catholic the child will be Catholic. What if my intent is that the child will be Anglican as I baptize him validly with the Trinitarian formula?

True story, told to me by the priest himself:

He was doing his bi-monthly visit to a mission and there was a snowstorm. An Anglican family had gathered for the baptism of a child but, because of the storm, the Anglican priest was unable to get there for the service that Sunday. He called our priest to see if he would be willing to accommodate the family, many of whom had flown in for the occasion, and baptize the child. Father did so with the ceremony found in the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. Is the child Catholic or Anglican?

[/quote]

There isn't Catholic baptism and non-Catholic baptism. There is valid and invalid baptism...well, and also licit and illicit within the category of valid, but that isn't what I mean. It is kind of like the Mass: even if there are illicit elements to a Mass, if it is valid then the True Presence is the True Presence. The reverence due to the Blessed Sacrament is not less when the Mass where it was consecrated had elements that were less than optimal. No, the reverence due to the Blessed Sacrament is always exactly the same. Likewise, the dignity of the baptized is always exactly the same.

If the child's parents have him or her baptized, the child is baptized. If their intention is to bring the child up in communion with the Anglican Church and they do that, the child is Anglican. If the parents bring the child up in the Catholic Church, the child is a Catholic. The baptism of a Catholic needs to be duly entered into the registry of the Church, but it isn't that act that completes the baptism. Registration is administrative; it is the verification and proof of what has truly already taken place.

Now, if a baptized person has not been in communion with the Church, there are ways of establishing that communion in a formal way. That doesn't change their baptism, though, nor does it make them a "better class of citizen" within the Body of Christ. It makes their communion within the Body of Christ more in keeping with their baptism (which in an ideal world would be in communion with the Bishop of Rome for every Christian) that is all.

We want our separated brothers and sisters to become Catholic so that we can all truly be one, as we are meant to be. When they establish full communion with the Church, however, they don't become more brothers and sisters. They were always full brothers and sisters. When the baptized of other denominations join the Catholic Church, then so to speak they start living at home, and gain the full life of faith that the fact of their baptism always implied was theirs all along.


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