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The Sacrament of Baptism

"Go therefore and make disciples of all nations,

baptizing them in the name of the Father,

and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit."

Mt 28:19

     Baptism is the first of the three Sacraments of Initiation, followed by the holy Eucharist and Confirmation. Baptism finds its roots in a Jewish purification ritual in which immersion in water was a means of initiating converts into Judaism. At His Baptism in the Jordan by Saint John the Baptist, Jesus changed this ritual into a Sacrament (an outward sign of God's love and man's faith) and fulfills and gives meaning to the use of water which was prefigured in the Old Testament in such events as the liberation of the Chosen People from the bondage of Egypt through the Red Sea.

     The Sacrament of Baptism is the key that opens the door of faith. Through the waters of Baptism, the Original Sin committed by our first parents, Adam and Eve, is washed away and our souls are purified. By this purification, we become children of God and enter into a relationship with God that can never be erased. Furthermore, we die to sin, are united with Christ, and through the anointing with the Sacred Oil of Chrism, share in His three-fold Office as Priest, Prophet, and King.

     The Church encourages all to enter into this magnificent relationship with God, and thus Catholic parents have a grave duty to have their children baptized and raised in the faith. To assist them in this task, the parents invite godparents to share in the duty of providing the spiritual needs of their children and to ensure that the children are properly raised in their Catholic faith. When choosing godparents, Canon Law (Church Law) asks that at least one of the godparents be a practicing, confirmed Catholic of good and moral standing and that both godparents be at least 16 years of age. In the event that a godparent is unable to attend the actual Baptism, the parent must find a proxy with the same qualifications previously mentioned. A Letter of Eligibility is required of all Catholic godparents from the Parish in which they are registered. A copy of their Baptismal Certificate and a letter from the church they attend is required of all godparents who are Christian Witnesses (non-Catholic).

For more information about arranging a Baptism, please click here.

Upcoming Baptismal Prep Classes

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, all Baptismal Preparation Classes were usually the third Monday of the month (unless otherwise indicated) and were held at 7:00p in the Parish of Saint Michael the Archangel Rectory Conference Room. (Park in the driveway and come up the side ramp door of the Rectory building.)

We are currently developing a new way of conducting Baptism Prep. When you register for Baptism, please provide a good phone number and e-mail address and we contact you as soon as we restart Baptism Prep.

Please call the Parish Office at 856-881-9155 to reserve your place in the class.

(To insure we have enough materials.)

Godparents are welcome, if able to attend.

Both parents are encouraged to attend the class

and children are welcome!

Requirements for all Catholic Godparents

  • At least 16 years old

  • Have received all of the Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Eucharist, and Confirmation)

  • If married, married according to the traditions of the Catholic faith and in a Catholic church

  • If single, living a chaste life, that is, not "living with someone"

  • Are registered in a Catholic church and attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation

  • One Godparent may also be a Christian Witness, which means they are Baptized in another faith tradition and actively practice their faith.

  • Visit "How do I obtain a Letter of Eligibility?" 

Sacraments 101: Why we baptize

Bishop Barron on the Sacrament of Baptism

C4: Ignite Your Catholic Faith - Why is Baptism Important?