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Sandra Jobin wrote:

Respected Sir,

I'm a pregnant woman hailing from Kerala, South India.

In our custom here, after my delivery, I'm supposed to stay away from Church for a period
of 45 days.

  • Is it because as my baby isn't baptized so I also have to stay away? or
  • Am I unclean to enter?

Please explain this to me.

Sandra Jobin

  { Why, in India, do I have to stay away from the Church and am I unclean to enter the Church? }

Fr. Jonathan replied:


This is not part of the Universal teaching of the Church but, if you have it right, it must be the local custom.

From what I can surmise, it would not be the Baby’s Baptism because the Church Law encourages the parents to baptize their baby within the first few weeks of birth.

So, if those are the only two choices, I would guess it is the unclean part and that there are echoes in this from the Book of Leviticus, chapter 12.

A lot of words to really say — I don’t know.

Fr. Jonathan

Bob replied:


That is no doubt a local custom based on ritual cleanliness, but is not a Catholic teaching per se.

You have the right to go to Church right away after delivery and your baby can be baptized as soon as you are able or would like.

Talk to your priest, but he should know the universal teaching of the Church.


Bob Kirby

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