Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as children of God; we become members of the mystical body 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)"

In the Western or Latin Church, baptism is usually conferred by an authorized minister by pouring water three times on the recipient's head, while reciting the baptismal formula: "I baptize you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit" (cf. Matthew 28:19).

Baptism is also the first step of initiation into the Christian community. During the Rite of Baptism, parents promise to raise their child in the practice of the faith. Parents who are not practicing members of the community may be asked to delay the Baptism of their child until they have re-established that connection by participation in Sunday Eucharist.

For Baptism Preparation please contact the parish office at 613-256-3441 or secretary@stmcorkery.


1. Who may baptize?

The ordinary minister of Baptism is a bishop, priest, or deacon. In the case of an emergency, any person may baptize, even if not baptized him/herself. This person must intend what the Church intends, and baptize the child with water, using the Trinitarian formula: "I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."

2. May a child be baptized if only one parent requests it?

The consent of at least one of the parents, or the person who lawfully takes their place, is required for the baptism of a child.

3. How long after the birth of a child should the Baptism take place?

As soon as possible after the birth: Parents are obliged to see to it that infants are baptized within the first weeks after birth. As soon as possible after the birth or even before it, parents are to go to the parish to request the sacrament for their child and to be prepared for it properly (Code of Canon Law, c. 867 § 1). An infant in danger of death is to be baptized without any delay (Code of Canon Law, c. 867 § 2). See question #1 above.

4. Can our child be baptized in a parish if we do not live within the parish boundaries?

Baptism, like all of the sacraments, is a celebration of a living relationship with God and with the local believing community, the parish. The sacraments are celebrations of our Church and, as such, are normally celebrated in the parish where the family resides or is registered and normally worships.

5. How do we arrange to have our child baptized in a parish other than the one where we normally worship?

If, for a good pastoral reason (for example, so extended family may attend), parents wish to have their child baptized in another parish, they need to approach the Pastor of that parish to ask if he is willing to baptize their child. A letter of permission to have the baby baptized elsewhere must be obtained from the Pastor of the parish where the family usually worships. Normally, Baptism preparation may take place in either of the parishes.

6. Must we give our child the name of a saint to be baptized?

A baptismal name that is offensive to Christians is not permitted; a saint's name is encouraged, but not necessary.

7. Does my Parish Church keep a record of my Baptism?

Yes. The basic entry includes: name; date and place of birth of the baptized; minister of the sacrament; parents (including mother's maiden name); godparent(s), and Christian witness (if any); date and place of the conferred baptism (Code of Canon Law, c. 877).

8. Can our child be baptized if we're not practicing Catholics?

Baptism is more than a rite of passage for a child or a washing away of original sin. Baptism is a sharing in the life of the risen Christ. Baptism is also the first step of initiation into the Christian community. During the Rite of Baptism, parents promise to raise their child in the practice of the faith. Parents who are not practicing members of the community may be asked to delay the Baptism of their child until they have re-established that connection with their parish community.

9. Can our child be baptized if we're not married?

Not married in the Church? Your child's Baptism and your marriage are two separate issues. Your marital status may be discussed during your Baptism interview to encourage you to get married (or validate your marriage in the Church) if this is appropriate. However, as long as you are committed to raising your child as a Catholic, he/she may celebrate the Sacrament of Baptism and be welcomed into the Catholic Church.

10. Who can be godparents?

Since godparents take on two roles - that of support for the parents in the Catholic upbringing of their child, and that of representing the Christian community into which the child is being initiated - they must be practicing Catholics, living according to the faith and fully initiated through the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist, who are mature enough (usually at least 16 years of age) to undertake this role. (Code of Canon Law, c. 872)

A godparent does not need to be the same gender as the candidate for Baptism. The godparent assumes no legal responsibility for the child.

11. Can a parent serve as a godparent?

A parent may not serve as a godparent because the parent already has a distinct role and relationship with the child. A godparent's role is separate from that of a parent or legal guardian.

12. What does a godparent do?

A godparent is called to model what it means to live as a Catholic Christian. The godparent is to assist the child in living a Christian life.

13. How many godparents are required?

The child may have only one or two godparents. If two godparents are chosen, one is to be a man and the other a woman. (Code of Canon Law, c. 873)

14. Can a person of the Orthodox faith be a godparent?

A member of the Eastern Orthodox Church may be a godparent together with a Catholic. "For a just cause, it is permitted to admit the Christian faithful of another Eastern non-Catholic Church to the function of a sponsor, but always at the same time with a Catholic sponsor." (Eastern Code of Canon Law, c. 685 § 3.) There must be at least one Catholic godparent.