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 and in the word.”

Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1213


Baptism: Incorporated into Christ’s Body, Sent on Christ’s Mission (USCCB) (PDF)
en Español
Bautismo: Los Sacramentos y la Misión Social BautismoIncorporado al Cuerpo de Cristo, enviado a la misión de Cristo (USCCB) (PDF)

Visit the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), for more information about baptism and Christian initiation.

Sponsor/Godparent Requirements (Paraphrased from the Code of Canon Law, Paragraphs 873-874)

A sponsor is an essential part of baptism and necessary to have for any person seeking baptism. If the person is an adult, the sponsor should be part of Christian initiation. If the person is an infant, the sponsor presents the child for baptism with the parents. A sponsor is one who assists the person to be baptized with living a Christian life and fulfilling its obligations. A sponsor can be male or female or one of each.

In order to be a sponsor, one must:

    • Be designated by the one to be baptized, or in the case of an infant, the parents.
    • Be 16 years of age or older.
    • Have been baptized, confirmed and received first Eucharist.
    • Lives a life in keeping with church teachings.
    • Not be the mother or father of the one to be baptized.

A baptized person who belongs to another Christian tradition can be a witness of the baptism, but only with a Catholic sponsor.

For more information on the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA), visit the Office of Worship.

If you have specific questions, contact your parish.