Baptism – Church Guidelines & How to book
‘Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as children of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission: “Baptism is the sacrament of regeneration through water in the word.”’ Catechism of the Catholic Church, n.1213.
Most baptisms in the parish are at the request of parents of newly-born children. Baptism is a sacrament of faith, performed in the midst of a community of believers. Faith inevitably matures and grows after baptism. This is especially so when the candidate is a child. It is particularly important in this case that the grace received at baptism develops and is nourished. In this task the commitment, support and guidance of the parents along with the godparent(s) are essential. In keeping with the policy of the Archdiocese of Armagh, suitable pre-sacramental preparation is mandatory for all parents requesting baptism for their child (the only exception being emergency baptism when a child’s health is in grave danger).
Baptisms in Keady are held on the second and fourth Sunday of every month at 12.30pm.
Baptisms in Derrynoose are held on the third Saturday of every month at 4.00pm.
Baptisms in Madden are held the first Friday of every month at 6.15pm.
The Baptism Programme takes place in the Mobile Unit, St Patrick’s High School, Keady, on the first Wednesday of each month at 8pm. All parents of children for Baptism in the parish must have attended one of the courses here or in another parish. Parents can register for the course at the Parish Office (Tel: 028 3753 1242). In cases where, for serious reasons, the parents are unable to attend the course, a pastoral visit to the home for sacramental preparation will be required instead. Please contact Deacon Martin Barlow (email: martin@the barlows.biz or Tel: 07597696784 to arrange).
All Baptisms must be pre-booked through the Parish Office.
We will need the following personal information for registering the baptism in the sacramental register.
Child’s full name (as it appears on the birth certificate)
Date of birth
Parents’ Names including mother’s maiden name
Please bear in mind the following requirements of Canon Law
- At least one parent should be Catholic and consent to the baptism. In the case of a fostered child, the consent of one of the child’s parents is required. To be admitted to baptism, there must be a realistic hope that the child will be brought up in the Catholic religion (Canon 868 #1).
- At least one of the godparents should be a baptised, confirmed and practising Catholic aged 16 years or over. A child may have either one or two godparents; if there are two sponsors, they must be one male and one female (Canon 873)
- The godparent’s role is to be a Catholic faith role model for the candidate for baptism (Canon 872). A baptised non-Catholic may act as a Witness at the baptism ceremony in the company of a Catholic godparent (Canon 874 #2).
- If you do not live in our parish and would like to arrange a baptism in one of our churches, you will need to talk to your own local Parish Priest so that he can give permission for the baptism to take place in our parish (Canon 857 #2).
Feel called to become a Catholic?
Each year, the Cathedral Pastoral Area receives adults who are seeking baptism as well as Christians of other denominations who would like to be received into full communion with the Catholic Church. The process begins with a short period of enquiry with a local priest where you can explore what you are seeking. This is followed by the ‘Catechumenate’, which is the period of preparation involved in becoming Catholic. This period varies for people depending on their needs and circumstances. It usually involves a course, generally known as RCIA (which stands for Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) which takes place on Tuesday evenings at St Patrick’s Cathedral, Armagh. Do call our Parish Office or one of the priests for more information.
Marriage - Church Guidelines & How to Book
“The matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole of life, is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.” Catechism of the Catholic Church, n.1601.
If you have decided to get married in Church then the parish community offers its congratulations to you. To succeed at anything in life it is necessary to prepare diligently. In relation to marriage there may be a lot of focus on the logistics of the wedding day. However, to be ready to live out marriage for life in conformity with God’s will, it is important to understand its origins and purposes. The Church therefore encourages her members to appreciate that marriage is not a mere social convention or contract – it is a relationship established by God and made a sacrament by his Son.
The parish encourages its members to wholeheartedly support those who are preparing for marriage and those who have recently received the sacrament. The example of couples who have lived happily together in service to God is a source of great encouragement to people starting out in this vocation. Please remember married couples and their families in your prayers.
How to Book a Wedding
For couples planning to marry, please make contact with the Parish Office at least three months in advance of your intended wedding date. This notice period is a requirement of the Irish Bishops’ Conference and can only be dispensed by the local bishop. Please phone 028 3753 1242 or email email@example.com to make a provisional booking and to make an appointment to meet with one of the parish clergy to begin completing your Church Prenuptial Enquiry Forms. Bookings can only be confirmed once Parts A and B of these forms have been completed.
It is also a regulation of the Irish Bishops that couples preparing for marriage must attend an officially approved pre-marriage course. This is designed to foster a proper understanding of the duties and obligations inherent in Christian marriage. You can book a pre-marriage course with ACCORD at www.accord.ie.
Since 1 January 2004 the law in Northern Ireland requires that a couple apply to the local Registrar for permission to marry. This is complied with by filling out a ‘Notice of Marriage’ that can be obtained from the local registrar’s office. The form can be returned to the Registrar of Marriages in the District up to twelve months before the wedding date but not later than four weeks before that date (the Registrars, however, recommend at least eight weeks’ notice). For more information consult the website of the Northern Ireland Registrar by clicking here.
Anointing of the sick
If you, or anyone you know, is sick at home and needs a visit from a priest, Holy Communion or Anointing, please speak with one of the priests or contact the Parish Office. In an emergency when someone is gravely ill or has died and a priest is required please call one of the priests at their home phone numbers given below.