Congratulations on the Birth of Your Baby
The birth of your baby is one of the most precious moments in your life. The excitement which you feel on this occasion is shared by all those around you – by your family, friends, and neighbours. Our parish too shares your joy. We welcome you and your child into our community.
As your child journeys through life, you will share with him or her all that is important to you. This includes your faith. The birth of your child thus gives you the opportunity to pause and think about your own faith and the part it plays in your life.
Traditionally, for Christians, the arrival of a new baby means a Baptism. Christians choose to have their child baptised for many reasons. We recognise that Baptism is a sign of God’s love for us and that to be baptised is to be reborn into the Christian community. The child is welcomed into God’s family through the pouring of water in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Thus, baptism is the first step in a child’s journey to God. Also, in Baptism, each child is reassured of Christ’s strength and protection. He offers his help and grace to face and overcome the difficulties of life.
If you choose to have your child baptised, it will mark the beginning of his or her own faith journey. As parents, you will have the responsibility to help your baby grow up in the love of God. You will be a guide through his or her Christian experience, which will bring him or her both blessings and responsibilities. Your child will have his or her own part to play in the work of Jesus Christ throughout the world. From baptism on, the light of Christ will shine through your child for the rest of his or her life.
During your child’s Baptism, as a parent, you would make promises on his or her behalf. Your decision to have your child baptised is therefore an important one. Are you sure that baptism for your child is what you really want? Parents can be placed under pressure from others to ask for baptism for their baby, even though they might not be comfortable with that decision. If this is happening to you please talk about it to the parish priest, your pastoral worker, or any member of the Baptismal Preparation Team. They will understand your situation and will want to help you make the right decision for you and your baby.
If you, the parents, have different perspectives on faith make sure that you take the time to talk about this as soon as possible. How will you develop a united approach to the faith development of your child while also respecting your own different religious experiences?
If you choose to baptise your child, we would like to help prepare you for this sacred celebration and for the days that follow. The parish community can offer you support, so that you can guide your child on his or her Christian journey.