Jesus told his disciples to go out to all nations to make disciples and baptize them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
The sacrament of baptism is our gateway into the life of faith. It is our first step on the path of discipleship. Normally children are baptized within three or four months of their birth.
The sacrament of baptism is also given to adults who wish to follow the path of discipleship in the Catholic Church and have not been baptized in any other Christian denomination.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. I am expecting a baby; can I schedule the baby's baptism now?
Yes. You can begin the process of scheduling your baby's baptism at any point during or after your pregnancy. We realize that things can change and we are willing to work with you should your plans/dates change.
2. I am not a member of the parish. Can I still have my child baptized at St. Agnes or St. William of York?
Sacraments are usually celebrated in the parish community in which you regularly worship. However, we are willing to work with those who would like their child's baptism to be at St. Agnes or St. William of York.
3. How does baptismal preparation take place?
Baptism preparation takes place within a sponsor couple setting. You will meet with another couple who will teach and witness to their experience as Catholic parents.
4. What are the first steps?
Call the Parish Office to discuss possible dates for the baptism and to receive the Baptismal Information Form..
5. What are the requirements for godparents?
Each child is to have two godparents: one male and one female. One of the godparents must be a practicing Catholic. This means that they themselves have been baptized and confirmed and that they are presently practicing their faith within the community of the Catholic Church. This means that they attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days and (if married) their marriage is recognized by the Catholic Church. Each Godparent must fill out the Godparent Verification Form (see #4 above) and have it signed by his or her pastor.
6. What if I want a non-Catholic friend or family member to be a godparent?
The role of a godparent is to support the parents in the child's religious education. They serve as an example of living the Catholic faith for the child. However, it is possible for a Christian of another denomination to serve as a Christian witness to the baptism. A Christian Witness must fill out the Christian Witness Verification Form (see #4 above).
7. I have a friend/relative who is a Catholic priest or deacon. Can he perform the ceremony?
Yes. Visiting Catholic clergy are welcome to celebrate the baptism of your child in either of our churches. Visiting clergy must request faculties from the Archdiocese of Baltimore. Information on that process can be found here.