sacraments

baptism

Baptism

Sacraments

Congratulations on your new baby and on your decision to have him/her baptised. Mallow Parish community shares in your joy and includes you in our prayers. By asking for Baptism for your child you are publicly thanking God for his gift to you and you are making a commitment to rear your child in the Catholic faith.

Parents asking for baptism for their baby need to address the following questions:

Why are we getting our baby baptised?

Are we prepared to rear our child in the Catholic faith?

In other words, are we willing to do our best, with the help of God, to live as followers of Jesus by loving God, through praying at home, attending Sunday Mass, and loving our neighbour as ourselves? Baptism is not merely a naming ceremony for your child or just an occasion for a family celebration. It is the first sacrament to be received enabling us to receive the other sacraments in due course.

By the pouring of Baptismal water on the head of the person to be baptised, the effects of Original Sin are washed away, the Holy Spirit of God comes to dwell in us and the newly baptised becomes a member of God’s family in the Catholic church.

Times for Baptism Ceremonies St Mary’s Church

  • Every Saturday at 5 p.m.
  • Sunday 1st, 3rd & 5th of the month at 1 p.m.

Times for Baptism Ceremonies Church of the Resurrection

  • 2nd & 4th Sunday of the month at 1 p.m.

Baptism Preparations

We want to help you plan and prepare for your child’s baptism so that the occasion adds to the sense of celebration and joy that a new baby brings to a family. Through baptism your child is welcomed as a new baby in the family of the parish and the universal Church – the family of God.

Your own faith is important

Your most important preparation is to look at your own faith. Your baby will be born with your features and will pick up your mannerisms. As he or she gets older your child will grow up, too, with your faith. That is why, when you approach the church about having your child baptised you will be encouraged to think through your own faith and the part it plays in your life. The very fact that you have asked to have your baby baptised shows that you recognise the importance of God in your life. From the earliest days children too young to answer for themselves have been baptised in the faith of their parents and godparents. The church recognises the desire of Catholic parents to share the life of Christ with their children. Jesus Christ, like you, wants the best for your child.

Growing in God’s Love

Your efforts will not only help your baby to grow up in the love of God, they will also help you to grow spiritually. As you teach your child to pray, your own prayer will deepen. As you teach your child to appreciate the Mass, your own faith will be enriched. Your baby’s baptism is only the beginning of a new life in which you will grow closer to one another as a family and closer to God in His church. The Church lovingly welcomes your child into its midst with prayers for continued love and happiness in your family in the years ahead.

Mallow parish tries to support parents in fulfilling the promises they make to their child and to God on the day of Baptism. You are invited to actively participate in and support your parish community by attending Sunday Mass. We welcome suggestions as to how with your help we can make Mallow parish a more welcoming and living parish for younger parents.

Once your completed application form, accompanied by Original Birth Certificate (this will be returned to you once copied) is received in the Parish Office and the date and time of the Baptism is confirmed a member of our Baptism Preparation Team will phone you to arrange a suitable time for them to visit you in your home. They will help you with the ceremony itself. They will address any anxieties you might have about what is expected of you on the day, what to bring, where to sit etc. They will give you a short reading and some prayers to be read, where possible, by family members at the Baptism.

The signs and symbolism of Baptism

Sign of the Cross

A sign on something shows its origins or ownership. The sign of the cross is the mark of Christians, followers of Jesus Christ who died on the cross. Parents and Godparents trace the sign of the Cross on the child’s forehead to show that the baby belongs to Christ, who now offers His help and grace to face and overcome the sufferings of life.

Water

The water of the Baptism cleanses us of original sin with which we are all born and, and in the baptism of adults of every sin committed prior to baptism. Water is also necessary for hydration for all living organisms and so the water of baptism is a sign, too, that the life of the risen Christ is ours.

Oils

Oil of Catechumens

A child is anointed on the chest with the oil of catechumens as a sign that the child is being set aside for a special friendship with Jesus. Please have the top buttons undone to make it easier to anoint the child.

Oil of Chrism

A child is anointed on the head with Oil of Chrism immediately after the pouring of the water. It is a sign of sealing with the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The oil of Chrism is used at Confirmation and Holy Orders also. The profession of faith which the parents and the godparents make on behalf of your child at baptism will later be confirmed personally by your child in the sacrament of Confirmation when the Oil of Chrism will be used again. The oils are blessed by the bishop at the Chrism Mass in the cathedral on Holy Thursday.

White Garment

This garment (usually a white shawl) is a relic of the new clothes worn by Christians after baptism in the first centuries. It is a sign of innocence and the new life of resurrection. The newly baptised is “clothed” in or wrapped up in the love of Christ.

Candles

These symbolise Christ – the Light of the World. The baptismal candle reminds us that the light of Christ has entered the child’s life; and its flame symbolises the flame of faith which will burn throughout the life of your child. The baptismal candle is lit from the paschal candle, which stands near the altar during the Easter season and during every Baptism and funeral throughout the year, as a sign of the risen Christ and that the newly baptised be always guided by Jesus the Light of the World.

Baptismal Register

Your baby’s baptism will be recorded in the parish Baptismal Register. The information you give on the application form is what is entered in the register. In the years ahead proof of baptism may be obtained in the form of a certificate issued on the basis of this registration. Your child’s confirmation, marriage or ordination will also be noted alongside this entry in the register.

Application Form

To allow for preparation for your child’s baptism, please download form here or call to the Parish Office to collect a form and some information in relation to having your child baptised. This booking form provides the necessary information for the Parish Baptism Register and your contact details for our Baptism Team. This completed form must be signed by both parents. The completed form signed by parents together with the Birth Certificate must be returned to the office 2 weeks before requested date of baptism. Only then will the date be confirmed.