Thank you for enquiring about baptism at the parishes of Deepdene & Balwyn and Camberwell.
The following information is designed to give you the information you need in making a decision about presenting your child to the Church community for baptism.
In our parishes we acknowledge that there are different times in each person’s life when the time is right for Christian Baptism.
- We welcome infants whose parents wish to bring them for baptism
- We also welcome school age children who wish to be baptised. These will follow the Rite of Christian Initiation for Children and the contact person is Sharon Freeman, Pastoral Associate (Sharon.Freeman@cam.org.au).
- We also welcome adults enquiring about baptism and Lyn Kane is the contact person for the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults.
So whether you are an infant, a young person or an adult, the parishes of Deepdene & Balwyn and Camberwell have a starting point for your initiation into the Church. You decide when the time is right for you and at what point you would like to begin the process of Christian Initiation.
Baptism of Infants
Like all initiation the baptism of infants takes place over a staged process. At Deepdene & Balwyn and Camberwell the following process is in place.
1 Baptism Preparation Evening
All parents attend a preparation evening prior to the Rite of Reception. This evening occurs at the end of each month. The preparation evening offers parents the opportunity to gain a better understanding of baptism as a stage in the journey of faith of their child. In addition to this, the evening provides the chance to ask questions about baptism.
2 Rite of Reception
The Rite of Reception involves the presentation of infants to the parish community. In this way parent(s) are signalling their intention to bring a new member into the community and asking the community to pray for and support the new baby as he or she begins life as a Christian member of the community. Parent(s) or guardians will be asked to bring their child to any of the weekend Masses during the first Sunday of the month (Saturday 5.30 pm, Sunday 9.00 am, 10.30 am & 5.00 pm – all Masses are at Our Lady of Good Counsel church for Deepdene & Balwyn Parish, Saturday 6.00 pm, Sunday 9.00 am, 10.30 am and 6.00 pm, at Our Lady of Victories Basilica) for this Rite of Reception.
What will happen?
At the beginning of Mass the parent(s) and or guardian will be asked:
What name have you given your child?
What do you ask of God’s Church for your child?
Then the child will be signed with the sign of the cross by his or her family members and by members of the community.
3 Rite of Baptism
On the second, third, and fourth Sunday of the month at 12.00 noon or during one of the Masses over any weekend, you have the opportunity to present your child for the Rite of Baptism.
While godparents are welcome but not required to attend the rite of reception they play a significant role in the Rite of Baptism. The role of a godparent is to nurture the faith life of their godchildren. They should be a Christian witness to their godchild in the way they live their lives. Godparents are generally over 16 years of age and should be fully initiated into the Catholic Church. It is customary to select two godparents, but only one is required for baptism. Other Christian sponsors may be chosen alongside the godparent(s).
4 Reception at the Parish House
During the year the Parish hosts a welcome to new parishioners and to those who have recently had a child baptised. You will be contacted after your child’s baptism and invited to one of these events where you will meet other parishioners who have had children baptised.
5 Growing in Faith
As your child grows and develops we would like to support you in their faith development. You will receive a yearly birthday card from Deepdene & Balwyn parish or from Camberwell parish. When it comes time for further sacraments of initiation (Communion and Confirmation) you will have the opportunity to enrol your children in the programs and liturgical celebrations designed to support them in their growth in faith.
What is the next step?
If you are ready to present your child for baptism we ask that you complete the form below. Sharon Freeman will make contact with you if there are any concerns regarding your form or the date you request for the Baptism. If you have any further enquiries, please contact the Parish Office on 9816 9291 or Sharon.Freeman@cam.org.au and Sharon Freeman will contact you. In addition, for those of you who are in the Deepdene & Balwyn parish, Desley Wilton and Eles Murray from the Baptism/New Connections Group will be in touch prior to your child’s baptism.
If you are interested in discussing the initiation of a school aged child, please contact Sharon Freeman at Sharon.Freeman@cam.org.au If you are interested in adult baptism, please contact our RCIA coordinator Lyn Kane on 9817 2171 or firstname.lastname@example.org