May 01, 2007,
L.M. asks from Chicago, IL on April 28, 2007
I'm Catholic/husband Christian - We Want to Baptize Our Daughter
Our daughter is 5 months old. We have yet to baptize her. I was raised Catholic, my husband Christian. We got married at a civil ceremony and agreed that our children will be raised Christian. One issue we are having is I want to have her baptized. A Catholic Church will not allow us to baptize our daughter and then not raise her a Catholic. Which I can understand. There are alot of things I will have to get used in raising her Christian, but this is one thing I want to do. We are looking for a non-denominational church that would baptize our little girl. We live near Wrigley Field and would like to keep it close to home.
Can anyone make a suggestion or have any advice? I saw some notes from 2006, but only one church was mentioned.
Another question....Catholics appoint God parents, is it unusual to appoint God parents in the Christian religion?
Thank you in advance for your feedback.
R.M. answers from Chicago on April 29, 2007
My husband and I recently started attending the Moody Church located on LaSalle and North Ave. It's non-denominational; however, rather than baptizing your child, you have them dedicated to the Lord while they're younger and then they decide when they're old enough whether they want to be Baptized. It's my understanding that dedications are essentially reminders for the child and parents to raise the child with a biblical upbringing.
Since religion can be a touchy topic, I'll just briefly explain my situation. My husband and I really wanted our duaghter to be Baptized; however, we also wanted to be involved with a church that was less organized and more laid back than others, so several people recommened the Moody Church to us (even a few people from out-of-state, as there is a live broadcast via radio and internet). We started attending about two months ago and have really enjoyed the experience so far. We will be having our daughter dedicated in a few months. I was a little hesitant initially; however, after some thought I felt that it was a nice idea to allow our daughter to decide when she's ready, when to be baptized while having her dedicated to a spiritual upbringing. These decisions can really be tough. Best of luck to you and your husband.
1 mom found this helpful
J. answers from Chicago on April 29, 2007
I guess I don't understand why you can't just baptize your children Catholic - is it because you weren't married in the church? I am not Catholic, husband is, our boys were baptized, and no promises of raising them Catholic were required. Just my experience, but if you are interested in baptizing them Catholic, you can check with a priest about details.
And yes, Catholicism is the original Christian faith! Christian = believes in divinity of Christ.
I don't know of any other churches offhand, but I know Baptists don't baptize babies, if that helps at all. (I think they do a "dedication" though)
C. answers from Chicago on May 01, 2007
I'm Catholic and my husband is, well, nothing really. We were married in the non-denominational Unitarian Universalist Church and considered baptizing our daughter there also but after talking with 2 ministers at 2 separate UU churchs we decided against. Their focus is on the congregation dedicating themselves to the child and it is done during a normal sunday service with many other children. You can invite family and friends but they don't play a part in the ceremony and godparents are not typically used. We are going to baptize our daughter next month in the Catholic Church (Immaculate Heart of Mary on Spaulding and Irving Park). The priest is very liberal and did not require us to attend baptizm classes and was open to not using sexist language in the ceremony. The only issue was that neither of our godparents were Catholic so we had to bring in a 3rd godparent who is Catholic.
When our daughter is older we will actively join a UU congregation because along with learning spirituality we want her to learn about justice and equality and a person's responsibility to give back to the community - principles of UU. At that point we will participate in the child dedication because it would make sense that a community she is involved in dedicates itself to her. Right now it makes sense for her friends and family to dedicate themselves to helping raise her so that is why we are doing the Catholic Church baptism first.
Sound convoluted? It has taken us along time to decide what to do but we are happy with our decision. Good luck on your decision.
N.P. answers from Chicago on April 30, 2007
My husband and I are both Christians and we just had our son (second child) dedicated (as Rebekah below had mentioned). I agree that this is a touchy topic, no doubt. We attend Harvest Bible Chapel and below is a little bit of what Christian faith believes in as far as baptism. Catholics versus Christianity equals to religion versus a relationship with God.
What Child Dedication IS
We believe that God must be a part of our family life if it is to be good and healthy. “Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.” Psalm 127:1
We believe that parents’ actions in raising their child are important to God. We have a responsibility as followers of Christ to raise our children in a way that will please the Lord. “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” Ephesians 6:4
In Scripture there is an example of dedicating children to the Lord. In 1 Samuel 1:11, 26-28, Hannah vowed to dedicate her child to the Lord if He would grant her one. The Lord honored her request and she kept her vow, dedicating Samuel to the Lord. “…then I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life.” 1 Samuel 1:11
As a Christian parent, by dedicating your child to the Lord, you are acknowledging your need for God in your family. You are inviting God to be active in your family life, submitting your own desires for your children to God’s desires for them, and making a commitment to raise your child in God’s way.
We believe that your child is not only yours, but a gift from God. We are earthly stewards of the life God has placed in our home. “Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one's youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.” Psalm 127:3-5
The responsibilities the Lord has entrusted to parents include continuously praying for their children (Deuteronomy 6:4-9), instructing them in the way of the Lord, setting a godly example, and disciplining them as the Lord would discipline us (Proverbs 29:15, 17; 13:24). As parents, you are only able to do these things through Christ’s strength (Philippians 4:13).
What Child Dedication IS NOT
This isn't the day of salvation for your child! Salvation is the free gift of God, received when someone grasps his or her need for Christ and makes the conscious decision to enter into a relationship with God.
It isn’t baptism for your child. Baptism is the public profession of faith as described above. Once a child is old enough to make a decision to accept Christ as his or her personal Savior, then he or she can make a choice to be baptized.
You are LOVED!
C.G. answers from Chicago on April 29, 2007
I'm in the same situation only my husband is Catholic and I am Lutheran. He has been VERY happy attending Holy Trinity Lutheran Church with me, which is right in your area (2 blocks from Wrigley Field on Addison & Magnolia). Lutheran is VERY similar to Catholic, and that's why it's been a great mix for us. Our daughter was baptised there in November and the pastor does an amazing jobs with baptisms/ ceremony.
R. answers from Chicago on April 28, 2007
I'm very confused by your post. Catholicism is just one of the many religions under Christianity. By being Catholic, you are automatically a Christian too.
That said, other religions have God-parents too--not just Catholics.
Does your husband attend a certain church? What about his family? I'd start with something familiar to him.
To be honest, I think you have a pretty easy dilemma to deal with here. It's not like your husband is Jewish or Muslim and you are Catholic--that would be a little more tricky.
K. answers from Chicago on April 28, 2007
We belong to Epiphany United Church of Christ on Bradley and Damen. It's a wonderful open group of people - lots of families, fast growing, etc. Not nondenominational, it's UCC (see www.ucc.org) which is similar to presbyterian in how it structures it's services. We have pretty traditional services with traditional music which I personally like.
The UCC is a non-doctrinal church, meaning that as long as you believe in the really big important things (we're talking Father, Son, Holy Spirit type things here) there's a lot of philosophical "wiggle room", which is different from the Catholic Church. The other big difference is that while the Catholic Church is the ultimate bureaucracy, the UCC is more like a direct democracy, organization-wise. My husband is a "recovering Catholic", as are many members of the church. I grew up in a UCC church.
As for baptism, you may appoint God parents at a baptism if you want, but you are not obligated to. We did not, since we didn't have any friends/relatives that lived close enough to do what we thought would be an adaquate job of really BEING a God parent.
Anyway, if you want more information you're welcome to email me or see the church website: www.epiphany-ucc.org
ps - As far as I always understood, Catholic IS Christian since you believe in the divinity of Christ. I think the distinction you meant to make is Catholic vs. Protestant where Protestant = all other denominations that are Christian but not Catholic. :)
J.P. answers from Chicago on April 28, 2007
I thought Catholics were a Christian religion? Also you don't have to have Godparents. You can appoint guardianship in a living will. I understand that Godparents are also their for spiritual support for your child but I don't think that it has to be appointed in a ceremony.