Letter to Parents from Canon Peter
At the heart of the Catholic Faith into which you asked to have your child Baptised, is the Heart of Jesus Christ which will never stop loving you and your child.
Jesus proved how deep, how strong and how sincere His love is by freely suffering and dying for us on the Cross. His death paid the ransom to free us from the debt caused by our sins; and His Resurrection, three days later, won for us victory over death and the possibility of enjoying the eternal life of heaven and perfect happiness there.
By showing His love for us in such a way, we ought to see (if we are a mature person) that we need to thank Jesus often; and because we can so easily get caught up in the busyness of life, we need to thank Him every day, many times every day; this is what we call prayer.
The best prayer of thanking God is the Mass, sometimes referred to as the Eucharist, which is derived from the Greek language meaning thanksgiving.
Do you remember those wonderful promises and assurances you made to God on the day you brought your child to the church to be Baptised? The priest addressed you with these words: “You have asked to have your child baptised. In doing so you are accepting the responsibility of training him/her in the practice of the faith. It will be your duty to bring him/her up to keep God’s commandments as Christ taught us, by loving God and our neighbour. Do you clearly understand what you are undertaking?” You replied: “We do”.
Then, just before the priest poured the water over your child’s head in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, and God invited your son or your daughter into His family, the Family of the Trinity, the priest said: “Dear parents and godparents: You have come here to present this child for baptism. By water and the Holy Spirit he/she is to receive the gift of new life from God, who is love.
“On your part, you must make it your constant care to bring him/her up in the practice of the faith. See the divine life which God gives him/her is kept safe from the poison of sin, to grow always stronger in his/her heart.
“If your faith makes you ready to accept this responsibility, renew now the vows of your own baptism. Reject sin; profess your faith in Christ Jesus. This is the faith of the Church. This is the faith in which this child is about to be baptised.” As affirmation that you were ready and willing to live up to this responsibility and accept the sacrifices involved, you and all present renewed their Baptismal Promises.
These promises and assurances asked of parents at their child’s Baptism is confirmation that the Catholic Church has always considered parents to be the first teachers of their children in the ways of faith; this is achieved primarily by example; if the Faith means everything to parents, it is more likely that the Faith will also be the most important aspect in the child’s life. In wanting your child now to receive the Sacraments of Reconciliation (Confession) and Holy Communion, Almighty God is giving you the opportunity to continue to be faithful to those promises and assurances to God in an even deeper way.
The priest and catechists of the parish will help you in your preparation for your child to be suitably ready to meet Jesus Christ in these unique ways through the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Communion, but you, as parents, have the prime responsibility to teach your child about Jesus’ love for them and to foster their love and gratitude to Him.
If your child has been Baptised in the Catholic Church, if they are aged seven or older, if (in normal circumstances) you are coming as a family to celebrate Mass every week and you are willing to commit yourself to a Programme of preparation, then please print the PDF application form below, ensuring that you fill in the form with clearly legible letters and post or put through the Presbytery letterbox as soon as possible, and no later than June 27, 2021.