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Sacraments - Godparents

Godparents are more than just special friends or relatives of the child to be baptized. Godparents stand as representative of the Catholic community and act as a special witness to the child of what it means to be a good Catholic.

Catholic church requirements

To be a sponsor, a person must be:

  • A baptized Catholic who has received the sacraments of Confirmation and Holy Communion and is practicing the Catholic faith.
  • Mature enough to undertake the responsibility.
  • A member of the Catholic Church canonically free to carry out this responsibility. If a person is married, the marriage must have been a Catholic marriage, not just a civil marriage. Catholics currently living in a marriage not considered valid by the Catholic Church or cohabitating are excluded from being a sponsor.
  • Someone other than the father or mother, spouse or fiancé of the one who is to be baptized.

Parish requirements

Registered Parishioners of St. Mary Magdalen who wish to be a Sponsor s in our parish or another Catholic Church must meet Catholic Church requirements, complete a Sponsor Commitment Pledge and attend a baptismal preparation class.

Catholic who wish to be Godparents at St. Mary Magdalen but who live outside of parish must complete a Sponsor Commitment Pledge and have the pledge signed by the priest of the parish that they are currently attending and attend a baptismal preparation class.

Can a non-catholic be a catholic sponsor?

No, however, a validly baptized and believing Christian from a separated church may act as a Christian Witness so long as there is also a Catholic Godparent. A non-baptized person, however, may never act as a Godparent or Christian witness.

What happens if the sponsor is unable to attend the baptism?

If a Godparent is unable to attend the baptismal ceremony, it is possible to have a “proxy”. A proxy is a stand-in at the ceremony when the designated Godparent can not be present. The designated sponsor will be noted in the official record of the parish.