Just as a baptized non-Catholic can be a witness with a Catholic at a Catholic baptism, a Catholic can be a witness with a baptized non-Catholic at a non-Catholic baptism. Godparents may not be under the age of 16. No. How Families Can Prepare for Spiritual Warfare | Kathleen Beckman, How Can Beauty & Culture Save the World? I'm not sure about being divorced. In order to fulfill this promise, the godparent must themselves be living the Catholic faith and their lifestyle must be in keeping with the teachings of the Church. If neither of the godparents is Catholic, this isn’t possible. But before we jump to conclusions and assume that the family’s pastor somehow erred in permitting a non-Catholic to stand as godfather to a Catholic infant, it is necessary to take a look at canon 874.2, which conveniently addresses this very question. There may only be two godparents, one of each sex. The non-Catholic must be baptized and must be present with a Catholic godparent at the time of baptism (Pastoral companion for Canon Law 57). You can be a "christian witness" to a protestant child with a catholic godparent. © Copyright 2021 Catholic Exchange. There is only 1 Christian God, who loves all regardless. I was told only one godparent has to be catholic. No. 5. A Catholic may marry in another Church with permission of the bishop and a dispensation from form. You do not intend to take the duties seriously. Are non-Catholic; Have not been baptized, confirmed and received the Eucharist. It is the Catholic understanding that godparents, in a liturgical and canonical sense, should themselves be members of the Church … Catholic etiquette dictates several criteria necessary for someone to be eligible to be selected as a godparent. Charles Grondin • Download Share. Can a non-catholic be a godparent to a catholic child? 2. It can be presumed that a priest, religious or consecrated soul fulfills these essential conditions to be a sponsor and therefore may freely accept such an invitation. Any Catholic of good standing can be a godparent though there are the following exceptions/requirements: 1. "§2. A godparent should be... a believer in Jesus Christ. Members of the Eastern Churches are distinguished from members of ecclesial communities. Question: Can Catholics be godparents to children of another Christian demonination? [Canon Law # 874.2] Q. Directory for Principles and Norms of Ecumenism. 874.2). One has to be a catholic in good standing (registered at a parish, attending Mass), the other one does not have to be (according to Church Canon). That's why we're having such a hard time getting her baptized bc my brother will for sure be the god father but we can't find a Catholic god mother we both feel comfortable with. The 1993 Directory for the Application of Principles and Norms on Ecumenism (Directory on Ecumenism) explains: A Catholic cannot serve as a godparent for someone who has no intention of growing in the Catholic faith. Other non-Christian faiths have their own godparent-like traditions, and many families in these faiths are being similarly influenced by broader cultural trends. Therefore, the bishop or his delegate can grant the permission and the dispensation after the fact, for the spiritual good of the Catholic party (being able to receive the sacraments and being able to serve as a godparent or sponsor). To do so, the Godparent must be a fully initiated Catholic (CIC 874§1.3) and ideally at least 16 years old (CIC 874§1.2). “A baptized Catholic above the age of 16 years old … and the Catholic who is baptized must also have completed the Sacraments of the Holy Eucharist and Confirmation,” said Madrid. Canon law does not forbid it. A member of a Protestant denomination may serve as a Christian Witness to the baptism with a Catholic godparent, but may not act as a godparent (CIC 874§2). I told them that the function of godparents, in my understanding, is to assist the parents in bringing up the child in the Faith. The validly baptized non-Catholic would be … Finally, “a baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community is not to participate except together with a Catholic sponsor and then only as a witness of the baptism” (Canon 874.5.2). Only Catholics who have been Confirmed and are in good standing can be the godparent according to Canon Law. I believe it is parish specific. Actually, it's only required that there is one godparent, period (there can be two, a man and woman). The candidate can not be a parent, step-parent or guardian of the one they are looking to represent, nor their spouse. However they can still play the role of a helpful guide and are known as ‘Christian Witnesses’. In short, if a person is not Catholic, but is a baptized Christian who belongs to a non-Catholic denomination, he may participate, together with a sponsor (godparent), as a witness of the baptism (Canon Law, Can. All godparents and sponsors need to have undergone their own Baptism, Holy Eucharist, and Confirmation. 4. A Christian of another denomination, whether Orthodox or Protestant, however, may be a "Christian witness" to the baptism along with the Catholic godparent. A baptized non-Catholic may not be a sponsor but may serve as a witness alongside a Catholic sponsor. If there are two sponsors, one must be Catholic. We both went to the same Catholic private school. Yes. Together they carry out the role of godparents in the baptism. Only Catholics who have been Confirmed and are in good standing can be the godparent according to Canon Law. A non-practicing Catholic does not qualify as a godparent; however, such a choice, as poor as it would be, is still better than a practicing Protestant in this particular role. In short, if a person is not Catholic, but is a baptized Christian who belongs to a non-Catholic denomination, he may participate, together with a sponsor (godparent), as a witness of the baptism (Canon Law, Can. A godparent must be a Catholic who is active in their own church--thus in good standing with the Church. Surely the catholic church would not endorse a couple, with children, who have never married, to be godparents. 2. Is there any regulations that disqualifies a person as a Godparent? Sacraments Services and Resources Stewardship Education Offices. A baptized, non-Catholic may serve as an “official witness” to the baptism, only if there is a proper Catholic sponsor who fully meets all requirements of a godparent (see 1, 2, 3 of Godparent requirements). A baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community is not to participate except together with a Catholic sponsor and then only as a witness of the baptism." In some Catholic dioceses, both godparents must be Catholic, while in others, only one of them must. It likewise makes no sense for a godparent of a Catholic to be someone who has ceased to practice the Catholic faith, or who lives in a sinful state that is incompatible with the life of a Catholic. The non-Catholic who is selected as a witness should be an active and participating member of … His … If the person in question is living a life in keeping with the Church’s expectations for someone in that situation, yes. A non-Catholic Christian may serve as a Christian witness, but there must be at least one Catholic godparent. Catholics May Not Be Godparents of a Non-Catholic. Choose godparents regardless -- just don't refer to them as "godparents." A Catholic is not forbidden to stand as godparent in an Eastern Orthodox Church, if he/she is so invited. A baptized non-Catholic may not be a godparent but can serve as a witness along with a Catholic godparent. I am wanting to know as far as godparents go can we have a noncatholic godparent as long as the other one is catholic?? A baptized non-Catholic may be permitted to serve at a Catholic baptism, but only in company with another, Catholic sponsor, and simply as a witness. Tons of people now -- people who marry outside of their religion; people who aren't religious at all -- want to have some sort of ceremony introducing their baby to world and the people they love, but they don't want to go the traditional baptism route (hi). Yes, what follows is a list of personal characteristics that disqualify a person as a Godparent: a. the person has no intention of fulfilling his obligations as a Godparent. Although the specific naming term of godparent arose through Catholicism, it is not exclusive to the Catholic Church to become a godparent. But before we jump to conclusions and assume that the family’s pastor somehow erred in permitting a non-Catholic to stand as godfather to a Catholic infant, it is necessary to take a look at canon 874.2, which conveniently addresses this very question. In other words, canon law permits the parents of an infant to choose a Catholic and a non-Catholic Christian as "godparents," and exteriorly they may both appear to assume these roles at the actual … Being selected as a godparent is an honor that carries with it important responsibilities. Actually, it's only required that there is one godparent, period (there can be two, a man and woman). I am not catholic but my husband is, and we agreed to raise our children catholic. Technically, only Catholics can be godparents or sponsors. The non-Catholic who is selected as a witness should be an active and participating member of his/her church community. Can our child be baptized in a parish if we do not live within the parish boundaries? 1 decade ago . Simply put, you can’t sponsor someone for Baptism if you are not yourself in full communion with the Church and the teachings of the Church. "§2. … Even as such they stand ready to assist the parents in any way they could for the good of the child. A non-Catholic may serve as a witness to the baptism, but is not officially the godparent, a role that is reserved to Catholics alone. Since they are not Catholic, they are seen by the Church as not being good role models of the Faith for the child. A non-practicing nominal Catholic would probably just shirk his/her responsibility as a godparent, and not contribute to the growth of the child in the Holy Catholic faith. It is a difficult one? maryc. As a non-catholic christian, I believe that the only pre-requisite of a God-Parent is that they are not atheist. 874.2). Canon Law states that a non-Catholic may stand up at the baptism like a godparent would as a witness to the baptism, but only if the other godparent … Someone who belongs to another Christian church cannot become a godparent but can be a 'witness' in conjunction with a Catholic sponsor. The 1993 Directory for the Application of Principles and Norms on Ecumenism (Directory on Ecumenism) explains: It is the Catholic understanding that godparents, in a liturgical and canonical sense, should themselves be members of the Church or ecclesial Community in which the baptism is being celebrated. A godparent must normally be an appropriate person, at least sixteen years of age, a confirmed Catholic who has received the Eucharist, not under any canonical penalty, and may not be the parent of the child. A baptized, non-Catholic may serve as an “official witness” to the baptism, only if there is a proper Catholic sponsor who fully meets all requirements of a godparent. Just remember that the minimum age of a Godparent is 16 years. Our parish both need to be catholic … 3. 98). Other non-Christian faiths have their own godparent-like traditions, and many families in these faiths are being similarly influenced by broader cultural trends. “a baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community may be admitted only in company with a Catholic sponsor, and then simply as a witness to the baptism” (Canon 874) Who Should Not Be A Godparent. A non-Catholic Christian may serve as a Christian witness, but there must be at least one Catholic godparent. Generally, the person has to have been baptized and has to be in good moral standing with a church. From exactly the same page; Roman Catholic Church The Catholic institution of godparenthood survived the Reformation largely unchanged. All godparents and sponsors need to have undergone their own Baptism, Holy Eucharist, and Confirmation. No. Non-baptized persons may not serve in the role of sponsors or witnesses. Yes, non-Catholic witnesses can serve as a Christian witness but it is not preferred. Answer Save. 2. Myself ( Catholic) and my ex partner ( non Catholic) have an almost 6 year old son. A Catholic may do the same for a person being baptized in another ecclesial community. a) However, based on the common baptism and because of ties of blood or friendship, a baptized person who belongs to another ecclesial community may be admitted as a witness to the baptism, but only together with a Catholic godparent. m. mommaL161820. Answer: Directory for Principles and Norms of Ecumenism: 98. Perhaps! Catholic Exchange is a project of Sophia Institute Press. The potential Godparent must also be a regular participant in the life of their church. They do not merely undertake a responsibility for the Christian education of the person being baptized (or confirmed) as a relation or friend; they are also there as representatives of a community of faith, standing as guarantees of the candidate's faith and desire for ecclesial communion (no. Fr. He was not baptised as a baby as his father would not agree with him getting baptised in the Catholic church. It is important that the ages of the godparents would enable them to do this if the parents die or become incapacitated in some way. A non-Catholic may serve as a witness to the baptism, but is not officially the godparent, a role that is reserved to Catholics alone. Can a non-catholic be a godparent to a catholic child? But its very similar. In my best friend’s sect of Christianity, godparents must be married, which is one of the reasons she didn’t choose me. Part of the reason for having godparents is to help provide for the child’s upbringing in the Catholic faith. Only a practicing Catholic who meets the qualifications of a confirmed Catholic, age 16 or older, and has received the Sacrament of the Eucharist, may be a godparent or sponsor for baptism. | R. Jared Staudt, PhD, The Lost Riches of Catholic Catechisms with Aaron Seng of Tradivox. If a godparent cannot attend the baptism, a proxy may attend in their place. Can one of my other children be the godparent? Godparents are generally expected to be: Over the age of 16 Confirmed At least one godparent must be Catholic. My son’s school has now approached me and are requiring a baptismal certificate for my son shortly so he can start to learn the sacraments. Relevance. I have a friend and his wife that were asked to be godparents for their niece; however, they have since been told that they can not serve in that capacity due to the fact that they are not Catholic. Please explain, and also why a good person, who is non catholic, may not be a godparent. That is, that a Catholic godparent cannot foster a non-Catholic faith in their godchild, if that is expected of them. f. "A baptised person who belongs to a non-catholic ecclesial community may be admitted only in company with a catholic Sponsor, and then simply as a witness to the baptism." Baptism, … A godparent must be Catholic. The non-Catholic must be baptized and must be present with a Catholic godparent at the time of baptism (Pastoral companion for Canon Law 57). 21 Answers. All rights reserved. They realize the importance of godparents and have asked me about the situation since I am Catholic. Media Resources About Us Protecting God’s Children TM Parish Directory. Report as Inappropriate. Do You Have to Be Catholic to Be a Godparent? Canon Law states that a non-Catholic may stand up at the baptism like a godparent would as a witness to the baptism, but only if the other godparent … If the grandparents are young enough, there is no problem. Non-catholics cannot be godparents. They do not merely undertake a responsibility for the Christian education of the person being baptized (or confirmed) as a relation or friend; they are also there as representatives of a community of faith, standing as guarantees of the candidate’s faith and desire for ecclesial communion. If there are two sponsors, one must be Catholic. The purpose of a godparent … A baptized non-Catholic may be permitted to serve at a Catholic baptism, but only in company with another, Catholic sponsor, and simply as a witness. No. Basically the adult is still recognized during the christening ceremony but theyre not officially a godparent. Candidates need to be no less then 16 years of age and carry the maturity required to fulfill the role. I am not catholic but my husband is, and we agreed to raise our children catholic. b) Because of the close communion between the Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Churches, it is permissible for a just cause for an Eastern faithful to act as godparent; together with a Catholic godparent, at the baptism of a Catholic infant or adult, so long as there is provision for the Catholic education of the person being baptized, and it is clear that the godparent … Non-Christians are not eligible for any formal role as dictated by the Church. In the Roman Catholic Church those that belongs to another Christian denomination cannot offer the guarantees required to become a godparent. “a baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community may be admitted only in company with a Catholic sponsor, and then simply as a witness to the baptism” (Canon 874) Who Should Not Be A Godparent. Technically, only Catholics can be godparents or sponsors. It can be presumed that a priest, religious or consecrated soul fulfills these essential conditions to be a sponsor and therefore may freely accept such an invitation. It is possible to have only one godparent, but … A non-Catholic person may not be a godparent at a Catholic baptism. A member of a Protestant denomination may serve as a Christian Witness to the baptism with a Catholic godparent, but may not act as a godparent (CIC 874§2). Candidates need to be no less then 16 years of age and carry the maturity required to fulfill the role. Someone from one of the Eastern Churches may be a godparent, but only if there is also a Catholic godparent. A non-Christian is certainly not suitable. If neither of the godparents is Catholic, this isn’t possible. b. the person is younger than the age that has been stipulated by the diocesan Bishop, … Even more important to consider is the etiquette pertaining to the role a godparent will fill in the life of a young Catholic child. He attends a Roman Catholic school. They tell me that the parents do not regularly attend mass and fully participate in the sacraments but wish to have their children Baptized into the Catholic Church. A Christian of another denomination, whether Orthodox or Protestant, however, may be a "Christian witness" to the baptism along with the Catholic godparent. A Catholic can choose 2 godparents (male and female), 1 godparent or 1 godparent and 1 christian witness for each child to be baptized. Likewise, one non-Catholic may act as a “witness” at a Catholic Baptism, but only if a Catholic is also acting as godparent for the baptized. You do not intend to take the duties seriously. A Christian Witness can be any baptized person of any Christian faith. It is the Catholic understanding that godparents, in a liturgical and canonical sense, should themselves be members of the Church or ecclesial community in which the baptism is being celebrated. Godparents can not be the father, the mother, or the spouse, of the person who is to be baptized. Canon 874.1 follows from the Church’s theological understanding of godparents as a matter of course. If the Godparents are not members of Holy Cross Parish they are responsible for obtaining a letter of good standing from their home … Father Michael Van Sloun is pastor of St. Stephen in Anoka. A baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community is not to participate except together with a Catholic sponsor and then only as a witness of the baptism." For more information, please see our Faith Facts: Spiritual Parents: The Role of Godparents in the Catholic Church, Eric StoutzInformation SpecialistCatholics United for the Faith827 North Fourth StreetSteubenville, OH 43952800-MY-FAITH (800-693-2484), Why You’re a Naked and Upright Mammal With Delicate Eating Habits (according to a Thomist), Mary, Star of the Sea: The Light Who Guides Us Home. Below is an extract from Canon/Church Law about who can be a sponsor/godparent at Baptism. Directory for Principles and Norms of Ecumenism: 98. In the Roman Catholic Church those that belongs to another Christian denomination cannot offer the guarantees required to become a godparent. Can an unbaptized person be a godparent? The validly baptized non-Catholic would be a … The candidate can not be a parent, step-parent or guardian of the one they are looking to represent, nor their spouse. Is there any leeway on the part of the parish priest in this issue or does he have the responsibility and authority to deny godparents as he sees fit for the good of the child in regards to Catholic Faith? At this time, one or more Godparents can be appointed, providing that the original Godparents are no longer part of the child's life. A baptized, non-Catholic may serve as an “official witness” to the baptism, only if there is a proper Catholic sponsor who fully meets all requirements of a godparent (see 1, 2, 3 of Godparent requirements). Check with the priest or whoever is performing the christening. The non-Catholic who is selected as a witness should be an active and participating member of his/her church community. Are non-Catholic; Have not been baptized, confirmed and received the Eucharist. Pollyd. I am wanting to know as far as godparents go can we have a noncatholic godparent as long as the other one is catholic? Non-Christians are not eligible for any formal role as dictated by the Church. Below is an extract from Canon/Church Law about who can be a sponsor/godparent at Baptism. May only be two, a man and woman ) alongside a Catholic child godparent though there are two,! Protestant child with a Catholic baptism undergone their own baptism, Holy Eucharist, and we agreed to our... 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