A godparent must be a Catholic who is active in their own church--thus in good standing with the Church. If neither of the godparents is Catholic, this isn’t possible. A Catholic may do the same for a person being baptized in another ecclesial community. Together they carry out the role of godparents in the baptism. Finally, “a baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community is not to participate except together with a Catholic sponsor and then only as a witness of the baptism” (Canon 874.5.2). 2. Non-Christians are not eligible for any formal role as dictated by the Church. I am not catholic but my husband is, and we agreed to raise our children catholic. But before we jump to conclusions and assume that the family’s pastor somehow erred in permitting a non-Catholic to stand as godfather to a Catholic infant, it is necessary to take a look at canon 874.2, which conveniently addresses this very question. Non-baptized persons may not serve in the role of sponsors or witnesses. Part of the reason for having godparents is to help provide for the child’s upbringing in the Catholic faith. You do not intend to take the duties seriously. A baptized non-Catholic may be permitted to serve at a Catholic baptism, but only in company with another, Catholic sponsor, and simply as a witness. The purpose of a godparent … Can Catholics be godparents to children of another Christian demonination? Non-catholics cannot be godparents. But before we jump to conclusions and assume that the family’s pastor somehow erred in permitting a non-Catholic to stand as godfather to a Catholic infant, it is necessary to take a look at canon 874.2, which conveniently addresses this very question. 5. A baptized non-Catholic may not be a sponsor but may serve as a witness alongside a Catholic sponsor. As a non-catholic christian, I believe that the only pre-requisite of a God-Parent is that they are not atheist. Is there any regulations that disqualifies a person as a Godparent? I was told only one godparent has to be catholic. Please explain, and also why a good person, who is non catholic, may not be a godparent. 98). The non-Catholic who is selected as a witness should be an active and participating member of … A non-practicing nominal Catholic would probably just shirk his/her responsibility as a godparent, and not contribute to the growth of the child in the Holy Catholic faith. Godparents can not be the father, the mother, or the spouse, of the person who is to be baptized. Fr. I have a friend and his wife that were asked to be godparents for their niece; however, they have since been told that they can not serve in that capacity due to the fact that they are not Catholic. A non-Christian is certainly not suitable. One may be a Christian from another denomination Family members or friends Adults who are not Christian are not appropriate choices for godparents because Being selected as a godparent is an honor that carries with it important responsibilities. Non-Christians are not eligible for any formal role as dictated by the Church. | R. Jared Staudt, PhD, The Lost Riches of Catholic Catechisms with Aaron Seng of Tradivox. A baptized non-Catholic may be permitted to serve at a Catholic baptism, but only in company with another, Catholic sponsor, and simply as a witness. Tons of people now -- people who marry outside of their religion; people who aren't religious at all -- want to have some sort of ceremony introducing their baby to world and the people they love, but they don't want to go the traditional baptism route (hi). Choose godparents regardless -- just don't refer to them as "godparents." It is possible to have only one godparent, but … In short, if a person is not Catholic, but is a baptized Christian who belongs to a non-Catholic denomination, he may participate, together with a sponsor (godparent), as a witness of the baptism (Canon Law, Can. A baptized, non-Catholic may serve as an “official witness” to the baptism, only if there is a proper Catholic sponsor who fully meets all requirements of a godparent (see 1, 2, 3 of Godparent requirements). From exactly the same page; Roman Catholic Church The Catholic institution of godparenthood survived the Reformation largely unchanged. maryc. In this case, the duty of providing for the Chris-tian education binds in the first place the godparent who belongs to the Church in which the child is baptized. All godparents and sponsors need to have undergone their own Baptism, Holy Eucharist, and Confirmation. Even as such they stand ready to assist the parents in any way they could for the good of the child. Therefore, the bishop or his delegate can grant the permission and the dispensation after the fact, for the spiritual good of the Catholic party (being able to receive the sacraments and being able to serve as a godparent or sponsor). A godparent should be... a believer in Jesus Christ. Likewise, one non-Catholic may act as a “witness” at a Catholic Baptism, but only if a Catholic is also acting as godparent for the baptized. Myself ( Catholic) and my ex partner ( non Catholic) have an almost 6 year old son. "§2. Answer Save. “a baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community may be admitted only in company with a Catholic sponsor, and then simply as a witness to the baptism” (Canon 874) Who Should Not Be A Godparent. A Christian of another denomination, whether Orthodox or Protestant, however, may be a "Christian witness" to the baptism along with the Catholic godparent. They do not merely undertake a responsibility for the Christian education of the person being baptized (or confirmed) as a relation or friend; they are also there as representatives of a community of faith, standing as guarantees of the candidate's faith and desire for ecclesial communion (no. [Canon Law # 874.2] Q. A godparent must normally be an appropriate person, at least sixteen years of age, a confirmed Catholic who has received the Eucharist, not under any canonical penalty, and may not be the parent of the child. A godparent must be Catholic. Catholic Exchange is a project of Sophia Institute Press. Godparents are generally expected to be: Over the age of 16 Confirmed At least one godparent must be Catholic. Below is an extract from Canon/Church Law about who can be a sponsor/godparent at Baptism. … If the person in question is living a life in keeping with the Church’s expectations for someone in that situation, yes. Only a practicing Catholic who meets the qualifications of a confirmed Catholic, age 16 or older, and has received the Sacrament of the Eucharist, may be a godparent or sponsor for baptism. That is, that a Catholic godparent cannot foster a non-Catholic faith in their godchild, if that is expected of them. Do You Have to Be Catholic to Be a Godparent? “A baptized Catholic above the age of 16 years old … and the Catholic who is baptized must also have completed the Sacraments of the Holy Eucharist and Confirmation,” said Madrid. 21 Answers. Just as a baptized non-Catholic can be a witness with a Catholic at a Catholic baptism, a Catholic can be a witness with a baptized non-Catholic at a non-Catholic baptism. They do not merely undertake a responsibility for the Christian education of the person being baptized (or confirmed) as a relation or friend; they are also there as representatives of a community of faith, standing as guarantees of the candidate’s faith and desire for ecclesial communion. The candidate can not be a parent, step-parent or guardian of the one they are looking to represent, nor their spouse. 1 decade ago . He attends a Roman Catholic school. You do not intend to take the duties seriously. In my best friend’s sect of Christianity, godparents must be married, which is one of the reasons she didn’t choose me. A. 3. Naturally it would be better if they were of the same denomination as the parents but I don't think it is important. Yes, what follows is a list of personal characteristics that disqualify a person as a Godparent: a. the person has no intention of fulfilling his obligations as a Godparent. But its very similar. Is there any leeway on the part of the parish priest in this issue or does he have the responsibility and authority to deny godparents as he sees fit for the good of the child in regards to Catholic Faith? Although the specific naming term of godparent arose through Catholicism, it is not exclusive to the Catholic Church to become a godparent. m. mommaL161820. No. It is the Catholic understanding that godparents, in a liturgical and canonical sense, should themselves be members of the Church … Generally, the person has to have been baptized and has to be in good moral standing with a church. The non-Catholic must be baptized and must be present with a Catholic godparent at the time of baptism (Pastoral companion for Canon Law 57). Favourite answer. A non-practicing Catholic does not qualify as a godparent; however, such a choice, as poor as it would be, is still better than a practicing Protestant in this particular role. A baptized non-Catholic may not be a godparent but can serve as a witness along with a Catholic godparent. Charles Grondin • Download Share. Other non-Christian faiths have their own godparent-like traditions, and many families in these faiths are being similarly influenced by broader cultural trends. His … Baptism, … The 1993 Directory for the Application of Principles and Norms on Ecumenism (Directory on Ecumenism) explains: It is the Catholic understanding that godparents, in a liturgical and canonical sense, should themselves be members of the Church or ecclesial Community in which the baptism is being celebrated. Someone from one of the Eastern Churches may be a godparent, but only if there is also a Catholic godparent. The non-Catholic who is selected as a witness should be an active and participating member of his/her church community. A baptized non-Catholic may not be a godparent but can serve as a witness along with a Catholic godparent. A Catholic may marry in another Church with permission of the bishop and a dispensation from form. Surely the catholic church would not endorse a couple, with children, who have never married, to be godparents. A Catholic is not forbidden to stand as godparent in an Eastern Orthodox Church, if he/she is so invited. In other words, canon law permits the parents of an infant to choose a Catholic and a non-Catholic Christian as "godparents," and exteriorly they may both appear to assume these roles at the actual … Yes, non-Catholic witnesses can serve as a Christian witness but it is not preferred. They realize the importance of godparents and have asked me about the situation since I am Catholic. A Catholic cannot serve as a godparent for someone who has no intention of growing in the Catholic faith. The potential Godparent must also be a regular participant in the life of their church. It is important that the ages of the godparents would enable them to do this if the parents die or become incapacitated in some way. Typically, the church wants you to get an annulment from the diocese but I think this may depend parish to parish. I am not catholic but my husband is, and we agreed to raise our children catholic. Members of the Eastern Churches are distinguished from members of ecclesial communities. All godparents and sponsors need to have undergone their own Baptism, Holy Eucharist, and Confirmation. That's why we're having such a hard time getting her baptized bc my brother will for sure be the god father but we can't find a Catholic god mother we both feel comfortable with. It can be presumed that a priest, religious or consecrated soul fulfills these essential conditions to be a sponsor and therefore may freely accept such an invitation. b. the person is younger than the age that has been stipulated by the diocesan Bishop, … For more information, please see our Faith Facts: Spiritual Parents: The Role of Godparents in the Catholic Church, Eric StoutzInformation SpecialistCatholics United for the Faith827 North Fourth StreetSteubenville, OH 43952800-MY-FAITH (800-693-2484), Why You’re a Naked and Upright Mammal With Delicate Eating Habits (according to a Thomist), Mary, Star of the Sea: The Light Who Guides Us Home. f. "A baptised person who belongs to a non-catholic ecclesial community may be admitted only in company with a catholic Sponsor, and then simply as a witness to the baptism." 10. Any Catholic of good standing can be a godparent though there are the following exceptions/requirements: 1. Can a non-catholic be a godparent to a catholic child? Are non-Catholic; Have not been baptized, confirmed and received the Eucharist. Pollyd. Can an unbaptized person be a godparent? Answer: Directory for Principles and Norms of Ecumenism: 98. Yes, non-Catholic witnesses can serve as a Christian witness but it is not preferred. They tell me that the parents do not regularly attend mass and fully participate in the sacraments but wish to have their children Baptized into the Catholic Church. A Christian of another denomination, whether Orthodox or Protestant, however, may be a "Christian witness" to the baptism along with the Catholic godparent. If there are two sponsors, one must be Catholic. In some Catholic dioceses, both godparents must be Catholic, while in others, only one of them must. The validly baptized non-Catholic would be a … ? No. Who can be a godparent? A non-Catholic may serve as a witness to the baptism, but is not officially the godparent, a role that is reserved to Catholics alone. However they can still play the role of a helpful guide and are known as ‘Christian Witnesses’. Can a non-catholic be a godparent to a catholic child? A member of a Protestant denomination may serve as a Christian Witness to the baptism with a Catholic godparent, but may not act as a godparent (CIC 874§2). Members of the Eastern Churches are distinguished from members of ecclesial communities. Actually, it's only required that there is one godparent, period (there can be two, a man and woman). The non-Catholic who is selected as a witness should be an active and participating member of his/her church community. Godparents . Since they are not Catholic, they are seen by the Church as not being good role models of the Faith for the child. Catholic etiquette dictates several criteria necessary for someone to be eligible to be selected as a godparent. “a baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community may be admitted only in company with a Catholic sponsor, and then simply as a witness to the baptism” (Canon 874) Who Should Not Be A Godparent. The validly baptized non-Catholic would be … A baptized, non-Catholic may serve as an “official witness” to the baptism, only if there is a proper Catholic sponsor who fully meets all requirements of a godparent. I am wanting to know as far as godparents go can we have a noncatholic godparent as long as the other one is catholic? Christian Witness The Code of Canon Law requires that children to be baptized have at least one, but no more than two, godparent(s) or one godparent and one Christian Witness (a non-Catholic baptized Christian). Father Michael Van Sloun is pastor of St. Stephen in Anoka. Technically, only Catholics can be godparents or sponsors. 874.2). In order to fulfill this promise, the godparent must themselves be living the Catholic faith and their lifestyle must be in keeping with the teachings of the Church. Actually, it's only required that there is one godparent, period (there can be two, a man and woman). 2. Candidates need to be no less then 16 years of age and carry the maturity required to fulfill the role. Check with the priest or whoever is performing the christening. Even more important to consider is the etiquette pertaining to the role a godparent will fill in the life of a young Catholic child. Question: Can Catholics be godparents to children of another Christian demonination? A non-Catholic may serve as a witness to the baptism, but is not officially the godparent, a role that is reserved to Catholics alone. Other non-Christian faiths have their own godparent-like traditions, and many families in these faiths are being similarly influenced by broader cultural trends. Only Catholics who have been Confirmed and are in good standing can be the godparent according to Canon Law. A non-Catholic Christian may serve as a Christian witness, but there must be at least one Catholic godparent. Sacraments Services and Resources Stewardship Education Offices. Someone from one of the Eastern Churches may be a godparent, but only if there is also a Catholic godparent. Can our child be baptized in a parish if we do not live within the parish boundaries? Yes. It can be presumed that a priest, religious or consecrated soul fulfills these essential conditions to be a sponsor and therefore may freely accept such an invitation. Canon Law states that a non-Catholic may stand up at the baptism like a godparent would as a witness to the baptism, but only if the other godparent … A baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community is not to participate except together with a Catholic sponsor and then only as a witness of the baptism." If a godparent cannot attend the baptism, a proxy may attend in their place. The non-Catholic must be baptized and must be present with a Catholic godparent at the time of baptism (Pastoral companion for Canon Law 57). There is only 1 Christian God, who loves all regardless. If the grandparents are young enough, there is no problem. It likewise makes no sense for a godparent of a Catholic to be someone who has ceased to practice the Catholic faith, or who lives in a sinful state that is incompatible with the life of a Catholic. A baptized person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community is not to participate except together with a Catholic sponsor and then only as a witness of the baptism." Directory for Principles and Norms of Ecumenism. a) However, based on the common baptism and because of ties of blood or friendship, a baptized person who belongs to another ecclesial community may be admitted as a witness to the baptism, but only together with a Catholic godparent. Candidates need to be no less then 16 years of age and carry the maturity required to fulfill the role. A baptized, non-Catholic may serve as an “official witness” to the baptism, only if there is a proper Catholic sponsor who fully meets all requirements of a godparent (see 1, 2, 3 of Godparent requirements). Are non-Catholic; Have not been baptized, confirmed and received the Eucharist. I believe it is parish specific. Canon law does not forbid it. A godparent must normally be an appropriate person, at least sixteen years of age, a confirmed Catholic who has received the Eucharist, not under any canonical penalty, and may not be the parent of the child. 2. Godparents may not be under the age of 16. Catholics May Not Be Godparents of a Non-Catholic. A non-Catholic person may not be a godparent at a Catholic baptism. How Families Can Prepare for Spiritual Warfare | Kathleen Beckman, How Can Beauty & Culture Save the World? Just remember that the minimum age of a Godparent is 16 years. He was not baptised as a baby as his father would not agree with him getting baptised in the Catholic church. A non-Christian is certainly not suitable. They can foster the Catholic faith in the child, or at best perhaps encourage them in what is common to our faiths, but they cannot foster them in a non-Catholic faith. There may only be two godparents, one of each sex. In short, if a person is not Catholic, but is a baptized Christian who belongs to a non-Catholic denomination, he may participate, together with a sponsor (godparent), as a witness of the baptism (Canon Law, Can. Someone who belongs to another Christian church cannot become a godparent but can be a 'witness' in conjunction with a Catholic sponsor. However they can still play the role of a helpful guide and are known as ‘Christian Witnesses’. The candidate can not be a parent, step-parent or guardian of the one they are looking to represent, nor their spouse. 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