The Archival Center

Guidelines for Baptisms at the Old Mission

1. The San Fernando Mission is not a parish but a public oratory. Baptisms are allowed in virtue of an age-old custom. The normal place of Baptism is the parish of the child’s parents.

2. Since the ordinary and usual place for reception of this Sacrament is one’s parish church, your pastor’s written permission is required.

3. Baptisms in Spanish take place at the Mission on the third Sunday of each month at 1:00 P.M. Baptisms in English take place at 2:00 P.M. Officiant at the baptismal ceremony will be the Rev. Julio Roman.

4. Prior to the Baptism, parents and godparents are required to attend a Catechesis. This class meets at the Old Mission at 7:30 P.M. on the Tuesday prior to the third Sunday of each month. Parents and godparents must attend this class.

5. Godparents, according to the Canons of the Church, must be at least sixteen years of age. At least one of the Godparents must be a baptized, confirmed and practicing Catholic. In the view of the church, married Catholic couples, who are actively involved in their parish faith community, are the most appropriate individuals to be considered as godparents. However, single adult Catholic men and women may also be asked to take on this role. Only one man and / or one woman may serve as the godparent at the ceremony, and be recorded as such in the baptismal record. Multiple godparents are not permitted. Baptized Christians who are not Catholic may serve as god-parents provided they meet the age requirement. If they serve however they will be identified as Christian Witnesses in the baptismal register.

6. Baptismal records are of utmost importance. In order to properly prepare for the Sacrament of Baptism, specific information is required for the Mission’s records. Forms to record this information are available at the Mission Office. Additionally, a copy of your child’s birth certificate must be provided.

7. Private Baptisms may be celebrated on Saturdays as scheduling allows. As these times are normally reserved for other events, a different offering schedule will apply. Contact the Mission Office about these opportunities when initially enquiring about Baptisms.