Happy Tuesday! Let’s talk!
UPDATE: Okay people, don’t be so polite. The next time I misspell “Coffee” in “Coffee Talk” feel free to point it out to me. And then offer me a cup!
2nd UPDATE: Some comments deleted, all comments closed. Nobody is in trouble, but here’s the deal: The magazine article about baptism in case of a miscarriage that a commenter posted in its entirety is not something I have permission to reprint on my site, and I am afraid that its tone and content would do more harm than good here anyway. But the commenter was correct in pointing out that this is an important topic for Catholic families to think about and discuss.
Here is some helpful information on the topic:
1. Baptism is an important sacrament and Catholic parents should take seriously their duty to have their infants baptized as soon as reasonably possible after birth. They should also familiarize themselves with the proper way to perform an emergency baptism in case their child faces a life-threatening condition any time before receiving the sacrament.
2. Only the living can benefit from the sacraments, including baptism. In the case of miscarriage, it is not at all wrong to baptize an unborn child no matter what its stage of development. Many parents do choose to baptize the embryo, even when they are reasonably certain the baby has died — both because they cannot be 100% sure when the baby died and because doing so provides them with a tangible way of expressing a real desire to have their child baptized. Doing so is not wrong, but it is also not a sacrament if the child is no longer living.
3. Parents who worry about the fate of their un-baptized unborn babies, can find a helpful guide to Church tradition and teaching in this article: Let the Children Come to Me: The International Theological Commission Clarifies Limbo. I think it is especially comforting for us to remember, as the article points out, that “God’s power is not restricted to the sacraments.”
[tags]coffee talk, catholic family life[/tags]