Post # 1
So DH is Catholic and attends church regularly. I am agnostic. We agreed we would baptize DD (due 9/6) but that we would wait until she is older and actually understands enough to make her own decisions to do the other sacraments like confirmation. DH has said he will take her to church but has agreed on exposing her to other views/religions/ideas as well.
We just filled out the Baptism paperwork and now I’m worried. Both of the godparents we picked are Catholic so that’s not an issue, but I’m concerned about my role. Apparently we will all have to recite promises during the ceremony? I was under the impression that DH and the godparents would be the one committing to raising her in the church, and that I wouldn’t have to. I do not want to recite or say anything I don’t believe or don’t actually intend to do in front of friends/family/a church congregation. Can I just stand there and not do the recitation? DH wants me to “just do it for him” and “they won’t be checking up on us anyway” but I’m not comfortable lying about that.
Does anyone know how this works? I know we have to take a class prior to the baptism but I’m not sure if these topics will be covered in the group setting?
More information: we were married in the Catholic Church but it was with a very liberal priest. It was a university church and they don’t do Baptisms, so this baptism will be in DH’s “new” church. I was baptized Catholic but am agnostic.
Post # 2
hollyberry4 : I don’t think it should be an issue for you to remain quiet during the recitations as the Catholic church is primarily focused on how the child is being brought up, so if one parents and the Godparents are Catholic it should suffice.
Post # 4
I just baptised my baby, and my DH is an atheist. He was not present at all at the ceremony so he didn’t have to lie. I think you’ll be ok not saying anything since everybody else is and nobody will be focusing on you. Otherwise not attending could be an option for you too.
Post # 5
prinzesschen : that’s good to know… thanks!
katierattray : ?? Don’t what?
Mrs.Massontobee : Thanks for your response. Did your DH have to attend the pre-baptism classes? I would like to attend he ceremony since both of our families will be there, but I just don’t want to do the recitation. I wish I could just be the picture taker!
Post # 6
hollyberry4 : My 11 and 12 year olds were just baptized. They started the classes late, so they didn’t do the classes with the other kids, we took them to meet with the instructor individually and they did their workbooks at home. I’m not totally on board with religion in general but my SO is Catholic and I was supportive of what my girls asked to do. If you were in my shoes, you wouldn’t have any problems with the classes/having to pretend to believe or say anything that is untrue. Also, during the baptism and sacraments themselves, I/we didn’t recite or pledge anything. The girls’ sponsors/Godparents did, I think, but we as parents didn’t. I think you should be good, and just be honest without being too honest, if that makes sense. It might also depend on how conservative your priest is. Our church is very modernized compared to the other ones in town, so they haven’t batted an eye at our divorced/children out of wedlock/blended family/living together before marriage situation one time.
Post # 7
I was baptized when I was 10, I remember it all and it was very special to me. Now I teach in a Catholic school. Yes, there are some rotten apples in the church-just like every other religion/organization. Pope Francis has been doing quite a bit of reform in the church, and hopefully it will continue to become a bit more modernized. For the baptism, you should be able to sit in the pews and observe. My mother isn’t catholic, (my father/grandparents/godparents are) and she sat right in front an didn’t say anything. Quite honestly, I usually don’t tell people in my everyday life that don’t know me personally that I teach in the Catholic church. I have been spit on, called a child molester, and a crook. All you can do is support her and expose her to other religons/cultures! Best of luck, Mom!
Post # 8
hollyberry4 : I’m not Catholic so I might be wrong, but I thought that during a Catholic wedding ceremony, you promise to raise your kids in the Catholic church. Maybe not the ceremony, but in the classes before? So if you were married in the Catholic church, you might have already made that promise.
Post # 9
hollyberry4 : No, he was not involved at all.
Post # 10
hollyberry4 : I do not know anything about Catholic baptisms, but I think the best thing would be for you to either sit in the audience or not attend at all. I completely agree with you that you should not recite something you do not believe. But also, standing there in front of everyone and not participating in the tradition would probably look like you’re basically saying “f you” to their religion, traditions, etc., regardless of your respectful intentions.
Post # 11
Just be aware that one cannot raise a child in the church and then try to claim you will let them choose their own beliefs. Church acts as indoctrination, telling a child that one belief system is the only truth and the only way to be “saved”. That isn’t freedom of thought for me, and as an atheist I’d have a difficult time that my children would be raised to think their own mother needed “saving”.
But the best approach would be for you to be honest with the priest of your DH’s church and find out what his requirements are. He may be willing to waive some of them for you.
Post # 12
kristin36890 : in interfaith marriages in the Catholic church, only the Catholic person is asked to raise the children in the church, and even then it’s more something like a “do your best” situation. In the past, the church would not approve marriages unless they promised to raise children catholic, but that has not been the case for a very long time, at least 15-20 years, probably longer.
Post # 13
I’m the non-Cathlic in the relationship and for the 3 baptizms for our kids, I just recited what I believed in and skipped the portions I didn’t.
As far as baptizm classes go…it could be really easy. At our last one, once the couple figured out I wasn’t Catholic I may as well not even been in the room.
Post # 14
hopefulfuturemrs : yes that totally makes sense! That’s good that your church is so progressive. I would prefer to wait until she is older and can decide for herself but DH wants to do it now and I figure it can’t hurt!
CDagger19 : oh my goodness how awful! I’m sorry you have been through all of that! I do agree that Pope Francis is pretty awesome and I applaud his efforts! Thanks for the advice about being able to sit in the pews.
kristin36890 : our priest was very laid back and basically only made my DH promise this.
tc3033 : thanks for sharing your experience! Sounds like it will be a pretty simple thing then to be gets to support but not say the things I don’t believe. Good to know!