Congratulations to all new parents and welcome to the children!

New life gives the promise, hope and expectations that the world will become a better place. If the world is to become a better place because these children have been born into it, these parents have a huge responsibility. They are not alone. We, the Christian Community, and specifically the Catholic Community of St. Bernadette, share that responsibility. We, the Parish Community of St. Bernadette, pray that our words and actions may lead these newly baptized children to the wonder of God’s love for them. We pledge our prayer and support to you, the parents and families who have been gifted with these children.

The Process of Baptism at Saint Bernadette Roman Catholic Parish

Your Baptism Preparation class and baptism date will be scheduled when the proper certificates regarding the godparents have been received and reviewed. Your Baptism Preparation class and baptismal date will be scheduled at that time.

General Policy for Infant Baptisms at St. Bernadette Roman Catholic Parish

Parents seeking baptism should have at least a three-month history as registered and actively participating members of the parish prior to the Baptism. If registered in another parish and the grandparents of the infant to be baptized are registered parishioners of St. Bernadette, the parents must have a letter of permission from the pastor of their home parish. Parents are required to attend one personal interview with Shirley Smalley and attend a Baptism Preparation formation class. Please contact Shirley at 480-905-4434 to schedule your interview.

Ceremonial procedures

At St. Bernadette, the sacrament of Baptism is a community rite. It allows the Catholic community to welcome your baby into the family of the Church. For this reason, we may offer group baptisms. Baptisms are usually held on Saturdays at 10 AM.

Godparents are chosen for their faith commitment and ability to assist the child and parents in their faith journey. It is customary to have two Godparents for Baptism, but only one is required by Cannon Law. A Godparent may be either male or female. If two are chosen, then one must be male and the other female. Only one of each gender may be listed as Godparents.

It is strongly suggested that Godparents attend a formal baptismal class either at St. Bernadette or at their home parish. If the Godparents are not parishioners at St Bernadette, a letter from their pastor and/or his delegate stating that they are practicing Catholics and do meet the requirements listed just below this paragraph. Note: The letter must be received, with their parish’s seal, and reviewed by Shirley Smalley before a Baptism date can be scheduled.

Godparents must meet the following requirements:

  • 16 years or older
  • May not be natural or adoptive parents of the child being baptized
  • Fully initiated Roman Catholic (Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist)
  • Must be leading a life in harmony with the Faith (a practicing Catholic)
  • If married, marriage must be validated by the Catholic Church
  • If unmarried, divorced, or separated, must not be cohabitating
  • Must be free of any canonical impediment (CC 1311)

If you have a child to be baptized who has reached catechetical age/the age of reason (Grade 2 or 7 years of age), you and they will receive different preparation. Having sufficient understanding, the preparation will then be for the full complement of the Sacraments of Initiation, i.e., Baptism, Confirmation, and First Eucharist.

Holy 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 (CCC) 1213

Shirley Smalley

Director of Sacramental Preparation, Infant Baptism

  • 480.905.0221 x214


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