SACRAMENTS
(732) 741-0500 ~ Fax: (732) 741-1489
94 Broad Street, Red Bank, NJ 07701

Baptism

Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit (vitae spiritualis ianua), and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as sons of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission: "Baptism is the sacrament of regeneration through water in the word." (Catechism of the Catholic Church #1213)

baptismResumption of Baptism during Coronavirus Pandemic

With the resumption of the public celebration of Baptisms in church the follow guidelines are effective until further notice

  • The celebration of Baptism within Mass is suspended. Baptisms outside of Mass are to be celebrated one family at a time.
  • The number attending should adhere to social distance guidelines. Families should wait outside the church, the minister will greet and lead the family into the church.
  • Masks are to be worn by all present and social distancing is to be maintained throughout the ceremony.
  • Only parents or godparents may hold the infant during the ceremonies.
  • Group photographs in church after the Baptism are not permitted.
  • The celebrant will not receive or make physical contact with the faithful after the Baptism; families should exit church immediately after Baptism in an orderly manner.

Baptismal Preparation for Parents during the Coronavirus Pandemic

We highly recommend the Reborn series (6 episodes) available free online on FORMED.org  to all St. James parishioners. Reborn explores the deeply personal power of Baptism, bringing to light the spiritual reality for parents and godparents and, most importantly, the child being baptized. Rendered with a cinematic beauty, Reborn presents the foundation of the Church's teaching on Baptism, with a step-by-step explanation of the rite itself, including its profound place in Scripture and Tradition.

To set up an account on FORMED.org:

  • Visit https://formed.org/signup
  • Choose St. James Church 94 Broad St Red Bank NJ
  • Set up a user account using email address (no need to create/remember a password)
  • Check email and click the link to log in

To view “Reborn” content:
After creating an account, visit: https://watch.formed.org/reborn

Infant Baptism         

From the earliest days of the Christian Community, the baptism of infants has been celebrated so that they may be brought into the realm of the freedom of the children of God, to which all are called. Parents requesting the baptism of their child are accepting the responsibility of nourishing the life of baptismal grace through the Christian education and formation of their child.

Baptism is celebrated at St. James Parish on most Sundays. (Please refer to parish calendar for exact schedule.) Parents are encouraged to attend a pre-Baptismal gathering during which the meaning of the sacrament is discussed as well as details concerning the celebration of the sacrament. The pre-Baptismal gatherings for parents are generally held on the Monday of the month.

Parents requesting to have their child baptized are asked to contact the parish office and to complete a Baptismal Request Form either online or download a copy and return it to the parish office.

Sponsors/Godparents

The role of the sponsor/godparent together with the parents is to present a child for baptism and to assist in the faith formation of the child being baptized. With the parents, he/she helps the baptized to lead a Christian life in harmony with the grace of baptism. Further, the sponsor/godparent represents to the parents the assistance of the Christian faithful in the child's formation. Parents should choose a sponsor/godparent who will take this role of assistance and representation seriously through faithfully witnessing to their own baptism and faith.

Honoring the importance and necessity of the role of the sponsor/godparent, the Church has established norms governing the qualifications needed to be a sponsor/godparent (Code of Cannon Law nn. 872-874). There is to be only one male sponsor or one female sponsor or one of each. A sponsor/godparent is:

  • to be designated by the parents (or one to be baptized)
  • to have the aptitude and intention of fulfilling this function
  • to have completed the sixteenth year of age,
  • to be a Catholic fully initiated into the Catholic Church having celebrated the Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist and not bound by any canonical penalty legitimately imposed or declared; not to be the father or mother of the one to be baptized
  • to live a life of faith which befits the role to be undertaken. This means that a sponsor/godparent sincerely believes and strives to put into practice the Word of God as taught by the Catholic Church and regularly takes part in the sacramental life of the Church; and if married, is in a valid marriage in accordance with the requirements of the Catholic Church.
  • Sponsors/Godparents are requested to obtain a letter of eligibility from their parish. A copy of such a letter can be downloaded from this page.

Members of St. James Parish who have been asked to serve as a sponsor/godparent are asked to download the form, affirm the role of sponsor/godparent by signing it and returning it to the rectory for signature by the parish priest.

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