Q&A

Why Should Sunday Baptisms Not Be Done Often?

By February 25, 2017 No Comments

Full Question

Why can baptisms occur at Sunday Mass, but “this should not be done too often”? (Rites, pg 369 #9)

Answer

The reasons for this guideline are practical ones.

  • Depending how many baptisms a parish has over the course of a year, they could prolong the Mass on a regular basis and cause consternation amongst the congregation.
  • The additional parts and music to the Mass can be confusing/disruptive for the music ministry and altar servers.
  • Having a section of crying babies that can’t be taken out of the main church or into a cry room because they need to be present for the different parts of the rite of baptism can be problematic if baptism is regularly part of Sunday Mass.
  • The readings on any given Sunday may not easily lend themselves to preaching about baptism.

To do Sunday baptisms at Mass on an occasional basis is a wonderful way of highlighting the connection of an individual baptism to the parish community as a whole and the connection of baptism to the Eucharist.  However, if done too often it does pose pragmatic issues.


By Fr. Charles Grondin

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