"Don't forget that the greatest inheritance you can give to your children is the faith. Try to see that it is not lost, nurture it and leave it as an inheritance." Pope Francis, January 10, 2016
TO SCHEDULE A BAPTISM
1. Has your child been baptized in the hospital?
2. Depending on the age of your child:
- Only infants (under 18 months) can be baptized during one of the weekend masses.
- Children older than 18 months of age can be baptized at one of the regularly scheduled baptism services.
- School age children (7 years old & over) need to be catechized in school or through the Religious Education program before being baptized. Please contact the Director of Religious Education at the Parish Office (773 327 8955).
- Adults seeking baptism should consider our RCIA program and call the Director of Religious Education.
3. Take the Baptismal Preparation Class
St. Josaphat’s class is usually held on the 2nd Monday of the month at 7 pm in the church, and lasts for about 30 minutes. You will receive a Certificate of Completion at the end of the class, and this serves as proof that you have taken the class (some other parishes require this if you are to be a Godparent to a baby being baptized in that parish). Classes will be cancelled if no one has signed up for the session.
Please call the Parish Office to sign up for the class (773-327-8955) and confirm class dates.
It is recommended that the family get a babysitter for their baby. However if the couple is not able to get one, the child is welcome to come.
4. Select Godparents
- Only one godparent is required.
- At least one godparent MUST be a baptized and confirmed Catholic. (The godparents are taking on the responsiblity to help raise the child in the Catholic faith after all!).
- If you have someone you want to be a godparent but the person is not Catholic, that person may be present as a Christian Witness IF he or she is a baptized Christian. A non-baptized person cannot be a godparent for a Catholic baptism.
- If you have two godparents, one MUST be a male and one MUST be a female (godfather and godmother).
- If you want more godparents, you can have as many as you want – but we only have room to record one male and one female. (We don’t make the record books, we just follow Church law) Christian witnesses are recorded in the same place as godparents, with the notation “Christian Witness”.
Currently, we are offering baptisms (except during the Lenten season when no baptisms are celebrated except in emergency) on Sundays at 11:15 am following our 10:00 am Mass. Due to the current pandemic, all baptisms will be scheduled as "private" - meaning that only one family's child(ren) will be baptized at a time. On certain Sundays, it may be possible to accommodate a second baptism at 12 Noon, depending on the schedule of our Priests/Deacons.
Families in the same household will be seated together, separated by others in accordance with local social distancing regulations. You will be guided where to sit.
Everyone over the age of 3 must bring and wear their own facemask.
Hand sanitizer will be available at each entrance and everyone entering the church must use it.
6. Call the Parish Office to schedule the baptism
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Can I schedule a private baptism for just our baby and our family?
All sacraments are meant for the entire community of believers. There is no such thing as a "private" sacrament. Sacraments are where Christians encounter God in and with and through one another. That is as true of baptism as it is of Eucharist. At times, due to circumstances, (e.g. someone sick in the hospital and alone when the anointing of the sick is celebrated, only one baby registered for a baptism, the desire for privacy in reconciliation, etc.) some sacraments may appear to be private, but even then, the hope is that the wider community is somehow participating in the celebration of grace.
The joy and happiness of a family in welcoming a new baby into their family is not limited to them, but is a cause for celebration for the parish family as well. Ideally, whenever we celebrate a sacrament, the entire community is present. However, since it is rare for all the parishioners to fit into the church at one time, not to mention the great diversity of individual's schedules, we schedule services that accommodate people's schedules, even though only part of the entire community can be present. Nevertheless, the hope is always that representatives of the broader community participate as a sign of solidarity with the individual or family.
How many other babies can I expect to be baptized with my child?
Your baby may be the only one baptized, or there may be 6 or more. Typically between 1 – 3 babies are baptized at a time at St. Josaphat. We do not limit the number of babies who are baptized at one service or mass.
When should I have my child baptized?
Usually within the first 3 - 6 months.
What if I can’t make any of the scheduled dates?
If you have been a registered, active parishioner for 4 months, and, for some special reason, you absolutely cannot make one of the regularly scheduled times, you can then schedule a baptism at another Sunday mass -- but NOT on the same weekend as we already have baptisms scheduled at another mass.
Can I schedule my baby’s baptism before he/she is born?
Yes! In fact, you are encouraged to!
What do we do on the day of the baptism?
Arrive about 10-15 minutes before the service or mass. Introduce yourself and your baby to the priest or deacon. Parents and Godparents should sit, with the baby, in one of the front rows of the church.
Is there a fee for having my child baptized?
Donations for having your child baptized are at your discretion. These contributions are considered a "Stole Fee" and are not tax deductible per IRS tax code:
A “Stole Fee” refers to money given to a cleric for the performance of sacramental functions ie: baptisms, weddings, funerals. The IRS does not classify these payments as tax-free “gifts” because the rendering of a service motivated the payment. It does not matter that the cleric requires no payment for the service, nor does it matter that some people give nothing under similar circumstances. Stole Fees are considered earnings subject to Federal Income Tax and Social Security Tax.