Every week, new parents come into the parish offices and request that their child be baptized. Some of these parents are profoundly committed to their faith, but many are not. Perhaps they're having their child baptized to please their family, to commemorate their child's birth and throw a lovely celebration, or just because it's part of their culture.
The new Belonging Parents Set offers these parents a comprehensive, holistic, and attractive depiction of what a Catholic life would entail for their child and family. It is more than just a synopsis of what the rite will include. It introduces these parents and their child to Catholic life.
The Belonging Parents Set consists of two parts: the Belonging Session Guide and the Belonging Parents Guide.
The Session Guide gives structure and direction during your initial contact with the parents, assisting you in answering their questions and concerns regarding their child's future baptism.
The Parents Guide portrays how their child's heart, soul, and life will be affected by baptism into the Catholic Church.
Those in charge of Baptism preparation at your parish can use the Belonging Session Guide as a reference for your sessions. The guide piques their curiosity by emphasizing the significance of the sacrament. It also alleviates any nervousness they may have about the process by explicitly outlining what is required of them during their child's Baptism (when to stand and sit, what to say, and so forth). Included conversation questions elicit their responses during your prep session, allowing you to learn about the role the Faith plays in their life and connect with them where they are.
Both the Belonging Parents Guide and the Belonging Session Guide are structured in four parts:
- Part 1: The Meaning of Baptism - Here, parents will discover a clear and compelling answer to the most fundamental question they are asking, “Why am I having my child Baptized?”
- Part 2: The Rite of Baptism - In this section, parents are given the details of the Baptism rite (the symbols, the materials used, the parts of the rite) so they can approach the sacrament confidently.
- Part 3: The Role of Parents and Godparents - What are you promising as the parent of the child being baptized? What obligations are you taking on when you agree to be a child’s godparent? All these questions and more are addressed in this section.
- Part 4: Raising a Young Catholic - Where do you go from here? Now that your child has been baptized in the Catholic Church, and you have promised to raise them in the Faith, how do you go about that? This section provides practical advice and guidance on how to create a Catholic culture in your home.
At the conclusion of your initial visit with the parents, give them the Belonging Parents Guide to take home with them. This will allow them to explore more deeply into the issue. The Parents Guide includes access to Fr. Mike's online films, which will help them better comprehend, but most importantly, appreciate, that the Church is their family, where they belong.
Don't pass up the opportunity to offer assistance to the new parents who will be attending Baptism at your parish. Don't pass up the opportunity to show them how much you care about them and their child. Provide them with the Belonging Parent's Guide.