Through baptism, we are cleansed of original sin and welcomed to the church as children of God, members of Christ, and heirs to the kingdom of heaven. Baptism is the first sacrament of Christian initiation, which is necessary before one can receive any other sacraments. The sacrament of baptism was initiated by Christ when he baptized St. John the Baptist and when he commanded his apostles to go and baptize all the nations in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
Baptism for Infants and Children Under Six
St. Francis Parish extends our warmest welcome to you and your child. As you know, you are the primary teacher of your child. By your example and teachings, your child will learn about life, love, and faith. Baptism is a beginning of one's life in the Family of God and is surely an important step. A decision to have a child baptized means that you are choosing to accept responsibility for your child's early faith development.
The following guidelines are our process for baptizing children under six years of age:
- You must be a registered parishioner. If you are registered at another Parish or attend another Catholic Church, you are required to obtain a letter of good standing from your Pastor and return it to us so that you may begin the process to baptize your child at St. Francis.
- You must fill out the English Baptism Registration or Spanish Baptism Registration. This form is available online by clicking on the form of your choice or you may pick it up at the Church Office. The form must be turned in with a copy of the child's birth certificate and the $35.00 fee.
- Godparents must be Catholic and must have received the Catholic sacraments of Baptism, First Communion, and Confirmation. If they are married, they must be married in the Catholic Church. If the Godparents are not married, but are a couple, they must be living in separate households. Godparents must attend the pre-baptismal class; if they reside out of the Bakersfield area, they can take a class at their local Catholic Church and bring a certificate or letter of attendance from their Pastor. Please call our Church Office for dates and times of upcoming classes at St. Francis Parish. Non-Catholics may not be godparents, but they may be an official witness only as long as there is one Catholic Godparent who fulfills the above requirements.
- Lastly, in order to schedule a baptism date, we must have the completed registration form, birth certificate, the $35.00 fee, and both parents and godparents must have completed attendance to the baptism class. You will not be allowed to schedule a date until all of the above is completed
If you have any further questions, please call the Church Office at 661-327-4734 or email Bianca Bravo, our Baptism Coordinator. We look forward to helping you and welcoming your child into our Church.
Baptism for Children - Six Years and Older
St. Francis Parish offers Elementary Religious Education to help prepare your child for this Holy Sacrament. For more information about enrolling your child, please call our Religious Education Office at (661) 323-8800.
Baptism for Adults - 18 Years and Older
St. Francis Parish offers Adult Faith Formation in both R.C.I.A. and Life Quest. For more information about either of these options for learning more about the Catholic Faith, click here.