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Vanessa Machukay wrote:

Hi, guys —

  • During the Baptism, when the priest asks:

      What name do you give your child?

  • Do you just say the first name or full name?


  { When the priest at a Baptism asks 'What name do you give your child?'; is the first name enough? }

Eric replied:

Hi, Vanessa —

Follow the instruction of your priest. I expect he's looking for the first and middle names, or at least the first. The idea here is that he wants to know your choice of name for the child; the last name is presumably pre-determined.

Traditionally children are named after saints, and if you recall, first names are also called given names (because they are given by the parents, as this rite illustrates) or Christian names (because they are given in Baptism).


Mike replied:

Hi, Vanessa —

You only give the priest the first name.

I've taken the Baptism Rite for the Catholic Church, which I think is a great thing just to read, and substituted:

  • my name: Michael Humphrey: for the baptized
  • Thomas and Mary as the Father and Mother
  • James and Carol as the Catholic Godfather and Catholic Godmother.

Baptismal Rite:

Celebrant: [Thomas and Mary], what name do you give your (son|daughter)?

Parents: [Michael].

Celebrant: What do you ask of God's Church for [Michael]?

Parents: Baptism.

Celebrant: You have asked to have your [son|daughter] baptized. In doing so you are accepting the responsibility of training [him|her] in the practice of the faith.
It will be your duty to bring [him|her] up to keep God's commandments as Christ taught us, by loving God and our neighbor.

Celebrant: Do you clearly understand what you are undertaking?

Parents: We do.

Celebrant: [James and Carol], as godparents, are you ready to help the parents of this child in their duty as Christian parents?

Godparents: We are.

Celebrant: [Michael], the Christian community welcomes you with great joy. In its name I claim you for Christ our Savior by the sign of His Cross. I now trace the cross on your forehead, and invite your parents, godparents, family, and friends to do the same.

Celebration of the Sacrament:

[After the homily, you will be Invited to proceed to the font]

Celebrant: My dear brothers and sisters, God uses the sacrament of water to give his divine life to those who believe in him. Let us turn to him, and ask him to pour his gift of life from this font on this child he has chosen.

Blessing and Invocation of God over Baptismal Water

Celebrant: Father, you give us grace through sacramental signs, which tell us of the wonders of your unseen power. In baptism we use your gift of water, which you have made a rich symbol of the grace you give us in this sacrament.

At the very dawn of creation your Spirit breathed on the waters, making them the wellspring of all holiness. Your Son willed that water and blood should flow from his side as he hung upon the cross. And after his resurrection Christ told his disciples: "Go out and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

Father, look now with love upon your Church, and unseal for them the fountain of baptism. By the power of the Spirit give to the water of this font the grace of your Son.

You created us in your own likeness: cleanse us from sin in a new birth to innocence by water and the Spirit.

The celebrant touches the water with his right hand and continues:

We ask you, Father, with your (son|daughter), to send the Holy Spirit upon the water of this font. May all who are buried with Christ in the death of baptism,
rise also with (him|her) to newness of life. We ask this through Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.

Renunciation of Sin and Profession of Faith

Celebrant: Dear parents and godparents: You have come here to present your [son|daughter] for baptism. By water and the Holy Spirit [he|she] is to receive the gift of new life from God, who is love.

On your part, you must make it your constant care to bring [Michael] up in the practice of the faith. See that the divine life which God gives (him|her) is kept safe from the poison of sin, to grow always stronger in (his|her) heart.

If your faith makes you ready to accept this responsibility, renew now the vows of your own baptism. Reject sin; profess your faith in Christ Jesus. This is the faith of the Church. This is the faith in which this child is about to be baptized.

And [let us all join with the parents and godparents] In their profession of faith,
by responding I do to the following questions.

Celebrant: Do you reject Satan, and all his works, and all his empty promises?

All: I do.

Celebrant:Do you believe in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth?

All: I do.

Celebrant: Do you believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was born of the Virgin Mary, was crucified, died, and was buried, rose from the dead, and is now seated at the right hand of the Father?

All: I do.

Celebrant: Do you believe in the Holy Spirit,, the holy Catholic Church,
the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body,
and life everlasting?

All: I do.

Celebrant: This is our faith. This is the faith of the Church. We are proud to profess it, in Christ Jesus our Lord.

All: Amen.


Celebrant: [Thomas, Mary, James and Carol], is it your will that [Michael] should be baptized in the faith of the Church, which we have all professed with you?

Parents and godparents: It is.


[Michael], I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

Anointing with Chrism

Celebrant: [Michael], God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ has freed you from sin, given you a new birth by water and the Holy Spirit, and welcomed you into his holy people. He now anoints you with the Chrism of salvation. As Christ was anointed Priest, Prophet, and King, so may you live always as a member of his body, sharing everlasting life.

All: Amen.

Reception of the White Garment

Celebrant: [Michael], you have become a new creation, and have clothed yourself in Christ. See in this white garment the outward sign of your Christian dignity.

With your family and friends to help you by word and example, bring that dignity unstained into the everlasting life of heaven.

All: Amen.

Lighted Candle

Celebrant: [Michael], receive the light of Christ.

Parents and godparents, this light is entrusted to you to be kept burning brightly. Your (son|daughter), [Michael], has been enlightened by Christ. (He|She) is to walk always as a child of the light. May [he|she] keep the flame of faith alive in (his|her) heart. When the Lord comes, may (he|she) go out to meet Him with all the saints in the heavenly kingdom.

Ephphetha — Prayer over Ears and Mouth

Celebrant: The Lord Jesus came into the world to proclaim the Good News.
[Michael], may (he|she) soon touch your ears to receive his word, and your mouth to proclaim his faith, to the praise and glory of God the Father.

All: Amen.

Celebrant: [Michael], you have put on Christ, in him you have been baptized. Alleluia, Alleluia.

Conclusion of the Rite

After the final announcements, [Thomas and Mary] are invited to stand.

Blessing of the Parents

Celebrant: God the Father, through his Son, the Virgin Mary's child, has brought joy to all Christian mothers, as they see the hope of eternal life shine on their children. May God bless [Mary] the mother of this child. She now thanks God for the gift of her (son|daughter). May she be one with [Michael] in thanking God for ever in Heaven, in Christ Jesus our Lord.

All: Amen.

Celebrant: God is the giver of all life, human and divine. May God bless [Thomas] the father of this child. He and his wife will be the first teachers of their [son|daughter] in the ways of faith. May they be also the best of teachers, bearing witness to the faith by what they say and do, in Christ Jesus our Lord.

All: Amen.


I hope this answers your question.


Vanessa replied:

Hi, Mike —

Thank you very much for answering my question; it was a huge help.

We just had the baptism today. I printed out what you sent and gave it to the family and friends who attended so they would know when to respond.

— Vanessa

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