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, 1213)
Many Catholics receive the Sacrament of Baptism as infants, in the presence of his or her parents and godparents. Through the saving waters of baptism, Catholics believe that we are washed clean from the stain of original sin (caused by the sin of Adam and Eve). The grace we receive in baptism also makes us children of God the Father and welcomes us into the Catholic Church.
There are different instances in which baptism is sought:
For an infant or young child (up to age 6) please see the infant baptism section (below).
For a child over the age of 6, or a teen, please see the PREP/RCIC page.
For an adult, please see the RCIA page.
Catholic parents should have their infants baptized within the first weeks after birth. Following the precepts of the Church's law and Archdiocesan policy, we celebrate this Sacrament for the children of our parishioners (those who reside within the parish boundaries or who have regularly attended Sunday Mass here).
A short baptism preparation course is provided for parents and must usually be completed before the baptism. There must be a founded hope that the child will be raised as a Catholic; when this is altogether lacking we ask that the baptism be postponed.
We are happy to celebrate the baptism of a grandchild of one of our parishioners. The parents must meet with their own pastor and request a letter of permission from him.
We ask that families presenting their children for baptism be registered members of our parish. If you have not yet had the chance to register, you can do so here. After registering, or if you are already registered, contact the parish office for more information about the process for preparation and celebration of the Sacrament.
For more information please call the parish office at 604-922-1371. You may be asked to meet with a priest.
Can I start this process before my child is born?Yes, in fact we recommend doing so.
How long does the process take?There are two to three meetings required before an infant is baptized. Child/adult baptisms usually require months of preparation.
When are baptisms scheduled?The Rite of Baptism recommends that baptisms be celebrated on Sunday. Baptisms are normally scheduled after the 11:00 am Mass so that families may attend Mass and then stay for the baptism.
Can we baptize in a place other than the Church?The Rite of Baptism indicates that it should be celebrated in a parish church. We do not celebrate baptisms outside of a church, except in cases of family illness or emergencies.
Who can serve as godparents?The Church asks that a child have two Catholic godparents who are baptized, confirmed, and living their faith. One of the two godparents may be a “Christian witness” who need not be Catholic. Someone may “stand in” (act as a proxy) for a godparent who is not able to be present at the baptism.