Sacrament of Baptism
Baptism at Our Lady Help of Christians
The first step is for parents to approach Fr John after Sunday Mass. He will then ask you to make an appointment to discuss the Baptism with him after which you will be given an Application Form.
Before Baptism one parent (preferably the Catholic parent) must normally attend a pre-Baptism course. In this course we will discuss the meaning of the Sacrament of Baptism and the nature of the ceremony. Courses take place over three weeks, about 4 times a year, usually on Fridays at 7.30pm.
When the course is completed you may make a date for the baptism to take place at any one of our Sunday Masses. The Rite of Baptism will take place over two Sundays. On the first Sunday you and your child will be greeted and introduced to the congregation and the actual baptism will take place on the following Sunday.
You are welcome to have your child baptised in this church if you are living in the parish or worship regularly here. If not you must get a letter from the Parish Priest of your place of residence or worship giving his permission and stating that you regularly attend his church.
Baptism is the Sacrament of initiation into a relationship with Jesus Christ and active membership of his Body, the Church. Church Canon Law requires that the priest ‘must have a reasonable hope that the child will be brought up in the Catholic religion’.
The child must have one Godparent who is over 16, confirmed and a practising Catholic. Normally the child may have two. You may choose a member of the Church of England or other Church whose baptism is recognised by the Catholic Church not as a godparent but as a Christian Witness, standing alongside the Catholic godparent.
The Church makes no charge for the Sacraments, but it is customary to make a donation to the Parish according to your means. The donation expresses one’s gratitude to God and one’s support for the good of the Parish and its works.
There is no set programme for Adults thinking about being baptised. Adult Baptisms usually take place at the Easter Vigil, after a period of preparation which may last several months or more..
Adults thinking about being baptised are invited to see Fr John for an initial conversation.
Members of other churches who are already baptised but wish to enter into full communion with the Catholic Church are also invited to speak with Fr John.