Infant Baptism: Beginning and Becoming A Parent Preparation Process
Master of Arts in Pastoral Theology
The pastoral problem, therefore, was two-fold, consisting of the lack of adequate preparation for the parents of infants and young children who were to be baptized, and the lack of involvement by the gathered assembly in the rite. As a result of this two-fold problem and because of its dual nature, the needs emerged at two levels, that of the parents and that of the community. Some of the parents’ needs that the team identified were to be supported and understood as they faced the difficulties of their role as parents in today's society, to feel a sense of belonging to the parish community, and to feel comfortable at the parish's liturgical celebrations. The community's needs were various as well, among which was its need to serve as witnesses of faith to the parents of these infants and children. Also identified was the need to perpetuate the mission of Jesus through the tradition of the Church by ongoing faith and communal formation of future generations such as the children who are to be baptized. Another need of the community was parents who understand more fully the significance of their role as the primary faith models of their children in order to nurture the faith.