Baptism

Baptism is important for many reasons. Baptism removes the guilt of original and personal sin and removes the temporal and eternal punishment we owe because of sin. Once baptized, a child becomes a member of the Church, enabling the child to participate in the Sacraments and the priesthood of all believers and grow in grace. 

Called By Name

Baptism preparation is required prior to the baptism of your first child. Called By Name© provides a Christian perspective on the call to parenthood. Through baptism, parents and community join in their commitment to bring your child into the Body of Christ.

Trained facilitators lead Called By Name. Facilitators encourage parents to recognize the privilege and responsibility of welcoming a child into their lives and to embrace the gift and challenge of parenting.

Class topics include:

  • Understanding the meaning of the Sacrament of Baptism
  • Preparation for the celebration of the Baptism ritual
  • Simple prayers and blessings to use at home
  • Community support and networking with other parents
  • Typical child development (birth to 12 months)
  • Practical parenting skills
  • Recognizing connections between physical care and spiritual formation

Both parents are strongly encouraged to attend Called By Name, whether or not both parents are Catholic. Your newborn is welcome and we encourage you to invite godparents. 

Registration is required for Called By Name and for the actual baptism. Please call your parish office for more information.

Requirements for Godparents and Sponsors

Each baptismal candidate must have at least one godparent, but no more than two. Canon Law 873 states only one male or one female sponsor or one of each sex is to be employed. Godparents must be at least 16 years of age.

A baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic community may not be employed except as a witness to baptism and together with a Catholic sponsor.

A godparent must be a Catholic who has been baptized, confirmed, regularly celebrates and receives the Eucharist on Sundays, adheres to the faith of the Church, and, if married, be married in the Catholic Church.

Baptism Responsibilities

Baptism opens up the door to the sacramental life, making salvation possible. As a parent or godparent, it’s important to educate the baptized child about the very benefits he or she may now receive.

Parents are called to raise baptized children according to faith and practices taught by Christ and handed down through the Church. Parents must teach their children the Catholic faith and lead children to regular participation in the Sacraments of the Church. 

Parents and godparents must continue to educate themselves in the truths of their faith, read and pray Scripture daily, practice the Traditions of the Church, have an active participation in the sacramental life of the Church, especially daily Mass and frequent confession, and be obedient to the Magisterium Teachings of the Church.

In addition to living out the faith in the ways named above, there are many additional ways to help a child grow in faith:

  • Pray for the baptized child, especially on the child’s birthday, baptism day or any other special day. Let the child know you are praying – it may comfort him or her in times of difficulty.
  • Be available to the baptized child and parents in times of sickness, family crisis, celebrations and life transitions. Share in their sorrows and joys.
  • Pray with your spouse, your family, your children and your godchildren. Let them know how important your faith is to you. Read scripture together, sit in the front pew at Mass and talk about the homily.
  • Show your interest in the child’s faith and spiritual growth. Ask about the child’s relationship with Christ and what he or she is learning about God, the Church and religion. Tell stories about God.

Baptism Facilitator Training

Called By Name© includes facilitator training and a combination of materials which have been either developed through the Center for Family Life Formation or from recognized publishers. 

Training and materials may be used as a stand-alone baptism preparation program or as an enhancement for a baptism preparation program currently used in your parish. The Center keeps frequently requested materials on hand and make them available to parishes at no cost (may include a small shipping and handling fee).

Called By Name has been developed in response to requests by priests, deacons and designated parish lay leaders for ongoing facilitator training with consideration for the widely differing resources and needs of parishes.

Training is scheduled as requested by pastors. A preview packet is available for those outside the Archdiocese of Omaha who are considering purchasing the program by contacting the Center for Family Life Formation.