Click here to go directly to the baptism registration form or continue reading and complete the form at the bottom of this page. After you complete the form, a member of our team will call to discuss your preference for time, date and location.
Thank you for choosing to raise your child in the Catholic faith! We’re excited to welcome the newest addition to your family into our parish family. This is the first step in helping your child reach their dreams! In baptism, you, your family and your friends promise to show your child how to love as Jesus did so that he or she can live the awesome dream that God has imagined for them.
Frequently Asked Baptism Questions
Why baptize a baby or toddler? Why can’t they decide as a teenager?
This is a great question. First, because we want to welcome your family into our family. Second, because you’re never too young to experience just how much God loves us, and in turn, share that love with others. In baptism, you and your child’s godparent(s) promise to show your child how to be a follower of Jesus through your words and actions. You promise to form your child in our Christian faith so that as they grow, they are able to make choices that are life-giving and liberating. Ultimately, when it is time for your child to be confirmed as a teenager, your child will have the chance to reaffirm (or, confirm, hence, the word confirmation) the promise that you make in their name at baptism. We want our children to grow up to be happy and free to live the life of their dreams. Baptism- saying yes to God’s love in our lives- is the first step in this process.
Do I have to register in the parish to have my child baptized?
No. You do not have to be registered in our parish to have your child baptized in St. Clare of Assisi parish- but if you’d like to register, you can click here to get started. By the way, registering in our parish doesn’t mean that we’ll send you contribution envelopes or anything like that, unless you specifically request them. In fact, the only thing we do when you register is add your information to our parish database, and call to say, “hi!”
Who can be a godparent, and how many godparents do we need?
A godparent is a Catholic, typically 16 years of age or older, who has been baptized, received first Eucharist and has been confirmed. (We call a person who has received these three sacraments a fully-initiated Catholic.) In addition to being fully initiated, your godparent should be a person who is willing to help you and your child be the best you can be as you grow in faith. A godparent can even be a grandparent, but they cannot be a child’s biological parent.
Only one fully initiated godparent is necessary for baptism, though many families choose to have a godmother and a godfather. If you choose two godparents, the second person can be listed as Christian witness if they are a practicing Christian of another denomination, as long as there is a godparent who is a fully- initiated Catholic.
If your godparents are not registered at St. Clare of Assisi parish, and they are able to get a sponsorship letter from their own parish, that’s great. (Please call us if they encounter any difficulties.)
What kind of preparation is involved?
If this is your first or second child, only one parent is asked to attend Baptismal Preparation Class. If this is your third child, you do not need to attend the class again. These are open sessions, so you do not need to schedule ahead of time. Again, only one parent is asked to attend the preparation session.
All classes take place at 140 Broad Street in Swedesboro, NJ 08085, at 7:00p.m.
Upcoming dates for baptism preparation in Summer 2017 are:
Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Tuesday, August 22, 2017
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
In the event of a weather-related cancellation, check our Twitter feed @SCA856
When can I schedule a baptism?
During Sunday mass. We celebrate baptism in our parish during Sunday mass at 9:30a.m. in Gibbstown or 11:00a.m. Swedesboro. If you schedule baptism during a Sunday Mass, photographs are permitted before mass, and after mass, but we ask you to refrain from photos during mass. The benefit to baptism during mass is that there is usually only one family celebrating baptism at a time, and a wider range of dates are available.
Outside of Sunday mass. We also celebrate baptism outside of Sunday mass in groups of up to four families. The benefit to baptism outside of mass is that families may take photographs during the celebration.
The upcoming dates for baptism outside of mass are
Saturday, July 15
Sunday, July 16
Sunday, July 30
Saturday, August 12
Sunday, August 13
Saturday, August 19
Sunday, August 20
Saturday, September 9
Sunday, September 10
Saturday, September 16
Sunday, September 17
Saturday, October 14
Sunday, October 15
Saturday, October 21
Saturday, October 21 –school aged children
Sunday, October 22
Unless there is an emergency, our parish customarily does not celebrate baptism of infants or young children between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday. In 2018 Ash Wednesday is February 14, and Easter Sunday is April 1.
What else do I need to do?
Our parish recommends a donation of $50 at the time of baptism. This amount offsets the cost of materials that you receive at the preparation class and helps our parish to sustain itself. You can make this offering in cash or in check on the day of baptism. If there are any financial obstacles, please give us a call and we’re happy to work with you.
Finally, please take a moment to complete this form. If you don’t hear from us with in a week, give us a call.