Baptism / Chrismation

Baptism / Chrismation

A child is generally baptized between the ages of three and ten months. Age, however, is not the primary factor in scheduling a baptism and baptisms can be performed at any age, including adult baptism. Baptism is the initiation into the Body of Christ. It is the way that we join Christ sacramentally. The Gospel of Matthew instructs that baptism should be performed in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19).  Therefore, all Orthodox Christians receive a Trinitarian Baptism and for those who convert to Orthodox Christianity and have previously been baptized, that baptism must have been in the name of the Holy Trinity.

Anyone who is to be baptized needs to have a godparent. The godparent, or sponsor, of a candidate for baptism or chrismation must be an Orthodox Christian, a supporting member of an Orthodox parish, and  must be in good standing. A person may not serve as a godparent if his or her marriage has not been blessed by the Church or if civilly divorced, he or she has not been granted an ecclesiastical divorce, or for any other reason he or she is not in communion with the Orthodox Church. Baptisms may not be performed during Holy Week or on any of the Great Feastdays of the Lord or Theotokos.

Please speak to the parish priest to schedule a baptism prior to making other arrangements. When speaking to the priest, please inform him of the child’s baptismal name. Baptismal names are Christian names, like of saints in the Church or names with Christian meaning.

The Godparent traditionally purchases a new white clothing to be worn by the child after baptism. In addition to this, the Godparent brings to the church:

  • A necklace cross
  • One single size white sheet
  • One large white bath towel
  • One small white hand towel
  • One bar of soap
  • One bottle of olive oil
  • One Baptismal candle plus two other candles