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Pope Francis' Prayer Intention For August

Small Businesses:

We pray for small and medium sized businesses; in the midst of economic and social crisis, may they find ways to continue operating, and serving their communities.


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Medieval Vestment



Baptismal font at St. John's

The life of Christian begins at Baptism, the first of the Sacraments of Initiation (the others being Confirmation and Holy Communion. There is a popular proverb which tells us that 'it takes a whole village to raise a child'. It also take a Christian Community to raise a Christian which is why in our parish we are committed to providing support and preparation for all parents and families who ask for Baptism for their Child.

If you are seeking Baptism for your child please read the information below. Alternatively, you can download it as a leaflet by clicking here. There is an application form that needs to be completed and you can download it from the link below. Complete the form and bring it with you to Church and speak to one of the priests and please don't be anxious. Once the priest has a few details, we will  discuss the way forward for you and your child.

The Sacrament of Baptism


Baptism is an occasion of great joy for the family and friends. It is not just a naming ceremony or even a blessing for a new baby. It is a sacrament: a gift from God. In particular:

  • it is the beginning of the Christian life that leads to eternal life
  • it makes the child a son or daughter of God with all the privileges and graces this carries
  • it welcomes the child into the Catholic family of faith


The Rite of Baptism spells out some of the main points of the sacrament.


The Role of Parents

At the beginning of the baptism ceremony, parents are addressed as follows:


“You have asked to have your child baptised. In doing so you are accepting the responsibility of training him/her in the practice of the faith. It will be your duty to bring him/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?”


In baptism, we welcome a child into the body of Christ, the Church. Baptism is a very important stage in our growth in faith. For a baby, it is only the beginning; a child needs to grow in the knowledge and love of God and the Catholic faith.


Most influential in this growth are the child’s parents. “Parents are the first teachers of their child in the ways of faith”. From parents, a child learns whether faith in God is important or not. The Catholic school will help a child to understand the ways of faith but a school can never replace the vital role of parents in bringing a child to faith. In presenting their child for baptism, parents should be aware that they are taking on an obligation to bring up their child in the Catholic faith.


God gives us all these gifts simply because he is our loving ‘father’, who wants nothing but good for us.


The Role of Godparents

Similarly, godparents have an important role. In the baptism ceremony, godparents are asked:


“Are you ready to help these parents in their duty as christian mothers and fathers?”


A child is baptised on the strength of the faith of the parents and godparents.


The Catechism of the Catholic Church states, “…the godfather and godmother… must be firm believers, able and ready to help the newly baptised - child or adult - on the road of Christian life” (n.1255). This is the Church’s way of saying that being a godparent is truly a ministry in the Church and not simply an honour.


Godparents are to represent the Christian Catholic community, the Church. They are to assist in the preparation of adult candidates for baptism and to be supportive of them afterwards. When it comes to infant baptism, godparents are to assist the child’s parents in raising their child in our Catholic faith, so that the child may profess and live it as an adult.


Godparents should be Catholics over 16 years of age who themselves practice their faith. Someone baptised in another Christian Church may stand as a Christian Witness.


Usually there are two godparents.


Some practical points

  • Baptisms are on Sundays at 12 noon
  • After baptism, the child will be clothed in a white garment. Bring something white with you for this, like a shawl or a cardigan.
  • The child will be given a Baptism Candle. The parish will provide this.
  • There is no charge for a sacrament, though parents often make an offering to the Church at the time. This is usually £50.
  • if you live outside the parish of St John The Evangelist, Poulton-le-Fylde, you must obtain permission from your Parish Priest for the baptism to take place at St John’s.


New Life

With the birth of a baby, a new person has entered our world. This tiny, helpless child will, with parental help, grow into a unique person. There has never been anyone quite like them before and there never will be again. Often, parents feel a sense of wonder and awe as they look at this newest member of the family.


The gift of life and the gift of love are two of the greatest gifts parents give their children. They also give them a family and the name by which they will be known for the rest of their lives. Parents give all this, and more, because they want nothing but good for their children.


Right from the start, parents make decision which they hope will give their baby the best start in life. Because they want their child to be healthy, they decide about feeding and inoculations. Because they want them to be successful, they decide what schools to send them to. Because they want them to be loved, they decide who is going to look after them if both parents are working.


A baby is not yet able to make decisions for itself so it is the parents who make these decision. It is their right and responsibility. It is one of the ways they show their love.


Every baby is born into a family. For all of us, it is important that we belong to a family. It makes us feel safe and we know there are people we can turn to. In a family, we feel at home.


Baptism acknowledges that God is at the heart of that family and gives us many gifts simply because He wants the best for us:

  • He gives the gift of new life. We are born not just for life in this world but to share God’s life in heaven. This new life grows and develops through our whole lifetime.
  • The gift of becoming a child of God. Through baptism we are able to recognise that God not only made us but that he is our loving Father. Jesus called God his Father and Our Father. He called him ‘Abba’ which means ‘father’.
  • Baptism also brings us into the family of faith, which we call the Church. We shouldn’t think of the Church as some great institution but as a big family. Like ripples on a pond, in the closest circle are the people who make up our local parish. Then our parish is part of the larger family of the Church throughout the world. The Church is part of the even larger circle that also includes those who are in heaven.
  • The Gift of a new name. After baptism we are called Christian. It means ‘one who belongs to Christ’.


Application Form For Baptism

When you are ready to approach the Parish Priest about baptising your child, please download the form, complete it and take it to Church and speak with the Parish Priest.

Application Form