First and foremost, congratulations on your decision to have your child baptized in the Catholic faith. Parents who are seeking to have their child baptized at St. Mary Cathedral – Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, Holy Redeemer Parish, and St. Thomas Aquinas parish are required to be properly prepared for both living out the commitment they are making to raise their baptized child in the Catholic faith and for being able to celebrate the Sacrament of Baptism with a clear understanding of the Sacrament. Click here to find out more about the Sacrament of Baptism...
The Importance of Sacramental Formation and How to Begin...
The first step is to complete the online baptism registration (blue link above) or contact the Parish Office 989.732.5448. The exception of course is in extreme, life and death circumstances where there is no time for preparation and formation.
Baptismal preparation at St. Mary Cathedral, Holy Redeemer, or St. Thomas Aquinas is required for the first child to be baptized at these parishes. For example: if your first child was baptized somewhere else and now you wish you have your second child baptized here you are still required to go through the formation process with us.
For parents who are NOT parishioners and wishing to baptize their children here, it is required that they submit proof of attendance of baptism preparation classes in their parish. This proof MUST come from their Pastor by way of a letter of completion.
What is Baptism Preparation like at St. Mary Cathedral Parish?
Baptism in 3 Easy Steps!
1. Initial Contact
Click the Register for Baptism link above to start the process! Before coming in for your initial visit, we recommend you read through the FAQs on Baptism so that you can truly maximize the experience of the initial visit by being further informed.
2. Online Education
The online REBORN series on Baptism is offered through FORMED.org. FORMED can easily be accessed by using our parish login code: DPR7NN. LOGIN TO FORMED. The series consists of three sessions (video with follow-up questions). The ‘Reborn’ series can be completed at any time just as long as all three sessions have been completed before the baptismal class. The best way to complete each session is for the parents to watch together and then take some time afterwards for discussion. Be sure to write down any questions you may have and bring those to the baptism class.
3. Baptism Class
Part of the formation process is an encounter or meeting between the parents and a member of the Parish staff (Fr. Matthew or Fr. Cooper). Other parents will more than likely also be present at these meetings so it will be an opportunity for the parent(s) to meet other parents, to get to know a member of the Cathedral staff, and to share in a small group setting their faith journey. The classes are informal and discussion based, allowing each parent time to delve deeper into the mysteries of our faith – the sacraments. Godparents are also highly encouraged to attend. The hope is that this class will provide parents and Godparents the opportunity to ask whatever questions they may have and to connect with the Parish.
A Baptism Formation Encounter is offered on Sundays at St. Mary Cathedral after the 11am Mass. Meetings are held in Meeting Room A in the Cathedral. Sessions will normally last one hour. At this point, if the child's baptism hasn't yet been scheduled, please contact the Parish Office at (989) 732-5448.
ST. MARY CATHEDRAL'S 2019-2020 Baptism Dates
Baptisms can take place during the 9am Mass, the 11am Mass, or after the 11am Mass.
HOLY REDEEMER PARISH and ST. THOMAS AQUINAS PARISH
Baptism during or after Mass by appointment.
Role of Godparents
"Whenever a person is baptized, as an infant, as a child, or as an adult, there should be at least one person present who will act as sponsor for the one being baptized. The sponsor, commonly referred to as one's godmother or godfather, accepts the responsibility of helping the person grow in the Catholic faith. One who acts as a sponsor for an infant or child agrees to help the parents teach their child about the faith and how to live as a practicing Catholic." - U.S. Catholic Catechism for Adults, Ch. 15.
Qualifications for the Role of a Catholic Godparent (also known as a Sponsor)
- Only one godfather or one godmother or one of each (Canon 873).
- To help the baptized person, together with the parents, lead a Christian life in harmony with baptism, and to fulfill faithfully the obligations connected with it. (Canon 872).
- A mature Catholic who will establish a lifelong faith relationship and be willing to walk with the child in their faith journey.
- A Catholic role model for the child.
- A Catholic who is at least 16 years old (Canon 874, §1, 2°) and has received already the Sacrament of Confirmation and the Sacrament of the Eucharist and who leads a life in harmony with the faith in keeping with the role to be undertaken (Canon 874, §1, 3°) and is not bound by any canonical penalty (Canon 874, §1, 4°)
- That is to say he or she ought to be a practicing Catholic who attends Mass regularly, participates in the sacramental life of the Church, and is part of the life of a Catholic parish community.
- If the Godparent is married, the marriage must be a valid and recognized marriage in the Catholic Church.
- Cannot be the father or mother of the one to be baptized (Canon 874, §1, 5°).
- Only with a Catholic Godparent can a baptized, non-Catholic person serve as a Christian witness of the baptism (Canon 874, §2).
- A Catholic who lacks the requirements to be a Godparent or a Catholic who is now practicing a non-Catholic faith cannot serve as a Christian witness.
- For a Catholic Godparent who is not a parishioner of St. Mary Cathedral, Holy Redeemer Parish, or St. Thomas Aquinas Parish a letter from the potential Godparent’s pastor is required. It is called a ‘Letter of Good Standing.’ The Godparent asks his/her pastor for a letter stating that he/she meets all the qualifications for the role of a Catholic Godparent (sponsor).