St John Vianney
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St John Vianney & St Monica,


St Monica


Dear Parents,

Congratulations on your new baby!  You will have already made many decisions about how you wish to do what is best for your child – choosing what name to give, which food, what pram, which clothes, who can look after him/her safely, etc.  You may have made changes which involve your life-style such as how you spend your money, staying in more, getting a bigger car or even changing your work patterns!

Wanting what is best for your child is also about the way you share what matters to you about life – good manners, speaking properly, treating others respectfully, education, concern for the world and, even – which football team he/she will support!

Baptism is part of choosing what you regard as best for your child.  Christian parents have, since the earliest days of the Church, wanted to share their Faith, and all that it brings to them, with their children.  But Baptism is just the beginning of a journey for your child.  After Baptism you will be expected to lead your child, as their parent, through your own commitment to Jesus in the Church to be full members of the Church - through Confirmation and Eucharist.

By choosing to Baptise your child you will need to share your faith with him/her – to tell the story of Jesus; to talk to God with them (say prayers together); to have signs about the home that the child will recognise as “Catholic” (Crucifix etc?); to help the child know others who are fellow Catholic Christians (through family, school, church, friends etc).

If one of the parents is not a Catholic, or of another Faith, they may need your help to understand what you are doing in Baptising your child – do share your Faith with them and invite family and friends to help.

Finally, if you are not attending Mass regularly at the moment do use your thoughts of Baptising your child as the opportunity to re-visit how you practice your Faith now.  Don’t wait for the Baptism to start coming to Mass!  To have your child Baptised without the intention of helping him/her practice what Jesus has invited us to makes no sense at all and is, at least, a waste of time or, at worst, hypocritical and highly offensive to the Catholic Christians of the Parish.

If, as parents, you wish to speak to either the priest or another parishioner about preparation for Baptism please contact us. 

May God bless and guide you

and your family at this special time.

“Parents, you have asked to have your child baptised.  In doing so you are accepting the responsibility of training her in the practice of the faith.  It will be your duty to bring her up to keep God's commandments as Christ taught us, by loving God and our neighbour.  Do you clearly understand what you are undertaking?”

(Baptismal Rite)


Preparations for Parents

At the Parish of St John Vianney & St Monica we have two preparation evenings for parents - so that they can understand the responsibilities which come with asking for their child to be Baptised.  

  • You will find a leaflet with more information about preparing to celebrate your child’s Baptism at the back of church.  Please read the leaflet and drop the attached form into the Presbytery.
  • The next dates of the preparation evenings for parents can be found on the current Bulletin - they are usually on consecutive Tuesdays at 7.00pm at the presbytery.


What should you do in preparation for the meetings?

Please discuss with your family what Baptism has meant for you.  Then the following three headings would be helpful at the meetings:

1. “Why do we want to have our child Baptised?”

2. Look at the section of the Baptismal service, printed in the red box above, which are the words the priest will ask parents at the beginning of the Baptismal service.  Ask yourselves: “how will we train our child in the practice of the faith”?

3. Baptism is usually celebrated after the 11.00am Mass at St John Vianney’s (If you are a regular at St Monica’s please speak to the priest).  Please come to the meeting with a number of options for the possible date of the Baptism.  We can have quite a number of Baptisms, and we do not usually have more than two at one time, so we need parents to be flexible with other families involved.  We usually confirm actual dates at the second meeting when all families are together.

Please feel free to speak to the priest after Sunday Mass.