Article Discussion: My Granddaughters Baptism

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This topic has 3 voices, contains 7 replies, and was last updated by  marjory 411 days ago.

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April 10, 2009 at 4:13 pm #1382

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November 16, 2009 at 6:15 pm #4039

Unregistered

I understand your pain, although I was raised (and raised my children) Roman Catholic. Now my son has told me that our first grandchild will NOT be baptized, and will be raised with no faith tradition, but with “exposure” to a variety of religions. They will have some sort of naming ceremony, but don’t want to “commit” to raising their child a certain way. What a disappointment!

January 23, 2010 at 5:03 pm #4262

Carole

I could really relate to this grandmother’s pain and I am sitting exactly where she is.  Our first grandson wiill be baptized in a couple of weeks.  My husband is handling this better than I am – I am crushed and I understand this grandmother’s decsriptions of pain in her heart (literal) – I am feeling the same pain.
My son (and his Catholic iwfe) are also planning a Jewish baby naming at the Temple where they joined.  It seems that even though they went to a class for interfaith couples at a Reform Temple before they were married, they still want to “have it all” and not choose one way or the other to raise their child or observe in their home.
I’ve read so much about this, and been to so many seminars and panel discussion where the participants are interfaith couples.  Most clery (from both religions) recommend choosing only one way to raise children when there’s an interfaith marriage.  I’m sure that’s probably the way the discussion went in that class, but my kids have decided to do both.  I’m not sure they have thought far enough in the future to prepare themselves for the conflicts and questions their son will have as he grows up.
I know that I have already had my chance to raise my sons the way I saw fit ( was a Synagogue youth director so they had plenty of exposure and warm family experiences in Judaism, including teen trips to Israel), and it’s their turn now.  I will not interefere with their decisions, but I am in so much pain over this.  I could use some advise for how to resolve this in my mind.  Any tips?

January 24, 2010 at 2:44 pm #4263

Andrea

First of all I’m a not particularly good Catholic, not Jewish, and I’m not in this situation myself, but I have listened to my mother’s feelings on how to negotiate the relationship with her daughter-in-law so she can see her grandkids. In her case, the kids were baptized into another church denomination and not Catholic, which also bothered her, though probably not to the same extent that it would if it were a different religion. She understands that my sister-in-law is the kid’s mother who makes the decisons about the kids, including who has influence over them, and she knows it’s best to stay on good terms with her so she can see her grandchildren often.

You have a grandson. That’s something to celebrate. Your son is going to be a member of a synagogue and probably will let you do Jewish things with your grandson, so that’s something else you can be happy about. I don’t imagine your grandson’s Catholic grandparents are thrilled about the synagogue or the Jewish baby naming or that the child isn’t going to be raised only Catholic. Baptism is something I would insist on if I were your daughter-in-law, so I understand her there. Baptism is very important to Catholics. The Church teaches that without it the child might not go to heaven if he dies unbaptized. You don’t have to agree, but it’s something your daughter’s family might see as an “insurance policy,” for lack of a better word. She is doing this to love and protect him. Try to see it that way and be happy you can also have an influence over him as he grows up.

February 5, 2011 at 6:39 pm #5462

Phx Mom

I totally disagree with what they’ve done. 
You cannot be a Catholic and a Jew at the same time.
I don’t mean to be rude to Andrea, but to say that the child is being baptized as “an insurance policy…to love and protect him” is demeaning.  It assumes that without this “protection” the child won’t get into heaven, a concept that’s pretty appalling to people of the Jewish faith. 
Look: There is a major disconnect here.  Christians believe in Original Sin and the need to be saved.  Jews believe people are made in God’s imagine and born without sin.  An “inclination to evil” is as far as it ever goes on occasion.  Catholics and other Christians believe in the Trinity; Jews believe God is One.  No physical manifestation is ever possible. 
While you can be exposed to two faiths, at the end of the day you’ve either got to choose one or end up with nothing. 

February 12, 2011 at 6:09 pm #5481

Andrea2

Yes, there is a disconnect, but it seems that when two people have intermarried people often choose to raise a child in both traditions, not one, and some people sincerely believe it IS possible to be both Jewish and Catholic in some sense. What that means is probably going to vary from individual to individual. Some Catholic members are likely to feel every bit as strongly on this topic as Jewish family members do. From a Catholic perspective, baptism is extremely important, even vital.

August 30, 2012 at 3:52 am #7311

Phx Mom

…”some people sincerely believe it IS possible to be both Jewish and Catholic in some sense.”

I’m baffled. How can you believe in Original Sin and NOT believe in Original Sin?
How can you believe Jesus died for your sins and that he DIDN’T?
How can you believe you were born in sin and have to be saved, and NOT born into sin?
All at the same time?

How in heaven’s name (LOL) are these beliefs compatible???
As they say, either you’re pregnant or you’re not.

Either you believe in philosophy A or philosophy B or somehow devise philosophy C, but it’s neither going to be an A nor a B.

August 8, 2013 at 11:06 am #16787

marjory

Our granddaughter was born a premmie and was never baptized as an infant.finially,when she was 14,my daughter and son-in-law decided to have her baptized.They told us that since she was never baptized as an infant,that they wanted to baptize her as an infant thru the infant baptism program at their parish and that their parish does infant baptism of older girls and that they have seen girls as old as 17 being baptized as infants. We were leary of her being baptized as an infant and felt it might damage her mentally and emotionally so we argued against it.the daughter and son in law felt it would be more meaning full for her and symbolizing her purity and innocence as an infant entering gods kingdom,rather than a ‘boy crazy’ 14 year old girl.With out our approval and blessing,they registered her as an infant to be baptized and her name was added to the infant baptism roster.We had no choice but to go along with it.The date was set for a month later and they told us she would be dressed as a regular infant for the ceremony.We took no part in helping out since we didnt agree with their decision.The morning of her baptism,they took her to the bridal dressing and dressed her in a very poofy,white,mid thigh length,baby girl style baptism dress with a matching baby style bonnet,lace anklets and white mary jane shoes.She had a cloth diaper,rubberpants and an under shirt on under the dress.We were taken aback when they showed her to us and we felt that it was to inapropriate for a girl her age especially to have the mid thigh length dress.We did participate in the ceremony and the daughter removed her bonnet and picked her up and held her like an infant to receive the water on her head.After the ceremony,some of the family members told us they could the diaper and rubber pants under her dress when she was being held and thought her dress was too short.we told them we had no say in the outfit and that the daughter and son in law wanted her baptized as an infant.

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