Baptism and Christian Initiation
We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death,
so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father,
we too might walk in newness of life…
if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him…
So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.
(Romans 6:3, 8, 11)
The origin and foundation of Christian Baptism is Jesus. Before starting his public ministry, Jesus submitted himself to the baptism given by John the Baptist. The waters did not purify him; he cleansed the waters. . . . Jesus did not need to be baptized because he was totally faithful to the will of his Father and free from sin. However, he wanted to show his solidarity with human beings in order to reconcile them to the Father. By commanding his disciples to baptize all nations, he established the means by which people would die to sin – Original and actual – and begin to live a new life with God.
In Baptism, the Holy Spirit moves us to answer Christ’s call to holiness. In Baptism, we are asked to walk by the light of Christ and to trust in his wisdom. We are invited to submit our hearts to Christ with ever deeper love. (United States Catholic Catechism for Adults)
Parents requesting baptism of infants and children to the age of five should be practicing Roman Catholics and registered members of the parish who regularly attend Mass at Church of the Visitacion. They should contact the parish a minimum of two months before the desired date of baptism. The pastor will schedule an initial meeting with the parent(s) at which time information will be taken. A baptism preparation class is required for the parents and the godparents of the child. Children over the age of six who are not baptized must be enrolled in the CCD classes and prepare for First Communion.
The documents below are provided to help you prepare for the baptism of your children.
For adults today, the Church, after the Second Vatican Council, has restored the order of the Catechumenate in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. It outlines the steps for the formation of catechumens, bringing their conversion to the faith to a greater maturity. It helps them respond more deeply to God’s gracious initiative in their lives and prepares them for union with the Church community. This process is meant to form them into the fullness of the Christian life and to become disciples of Jesus, their teacher. (UnitedStatesCatholicCatechismforAdults)
Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is for non-Baptized adults or adults who were baptized in other Christian denomination who are considering becoming full members of the Roman Catholic Church. The program also welcomes adults who were baptized into the Catholic Church as infants but who never received further catechesis and did not receive the sacraments of Confirmation and Communion. The RCIA program includes Catholic doctrine and morality, Bible study, community participation, and self-reflection. The group meets from September through May.
If you or someone you know is interested in RCIA or more information about the Catholic faith please contact the Rectory Office at (415) 494-5517.