What are the consequences for a Catholic parent who has their child baptized Lutheran?

My husband is Catholic and I am Lutheran. We are trying to decide which church to have our newborn baptized in. We had decided Lutheran because it has less restrictions on Godparents. However, someone recently told us that if we went Lutheran, my husband would no longer be allowed to take communion in the Catholic church. Is this true? Need answers as now there is an increased amount of tension between us!

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13 Comments to “What are the consequences for a Catholic parent who has their child baptized Lutheran?”

  • Hammer Brother

    You can always pretend you’re Catholic.

  • Catholic Defender

    not true

  • Misty

    No, I don’t think it would stop him from being able to receive, but you’d be best off to ask a priest.

    If you were married in the Catholic Church, then you promised to have your children baptized in the Catholic Church and raised accordingly. I would take that very seriously.

    The Catholic Church has restrictions regarding Godparents because it’s important. Better to follow God and be obedient to him, then to do things your way because it fits your life better.

  • Thus Always to Tyrants

    Perhaps it is time to decide what is more important to you: your love and marriage or the petty differences between two branches of the same ideology. Surely receiving a waffer from a priest is not nearly as important as the love you have for one another. I hope…

  • Edward O

    Have your child baptized Catholic and brought up Catholic. If you think your godparents are too weak, get different godparents.

  • Susanna

    there are too many rules/regulations, how does one keep up? your little baby is not accountable yet and has no idea of the committment being made, nor will “sprinkling” save anyone, total immersion is Biblical, perhaps do a “dedication”? just a suggestion, not being mean or anything negative at all:-) God Bless and Keep You and Your Family :-)

  • PattyAnn

    It’s not your husband being baptized. There’s no reason why he can’t take communion in the Catholic church, no matter who is godparent to his child.
    One thing, Lutherans won’t put you out of the church because you might have picked the wrong godparents.
    Your husband is Catholic. There would be no reason for denying him communion when he has done nothing wrong.

  • answer4you

    LisaJ35… with all due respect, I’d like to comment on some of your statements…

    “We had decided Lutheran because it has less restrictions on Godparents” — Baptism is not about the Godparents. It’s about the child having a improved chance of having a strong spiritual guide. If you are deciding based on the Godparents meeting the criteria, then you may want to consider finding more “suitable” Godparents. Nobody says that the being Catholic is easy, but at the same time… it’s not about picking and choosing what to and what not to believe in.

    If your husband knowingly allows his child to be Baptized Lutheran, than that is correct. He should not be receiving communion. This is due to the fact that he is not doing what he needs to, in order to raise his child Catholic. In essence, he is putting the “convenience” for the Godparents ahead of what GOD and HIS church has taught it’s people.

    I pray that you can resolve this matter, but unfortunately, if the child is baptized as Lutheran, then your husband SHOULD NOT receive communion, until the situation is rectified.

    GOD BLESS…

  • sparki777

    If your husband fails to raise his children Catholic — as he promised to do when he got dispensation to marry you, a non-Catholic — he will be breaking a solemn vow that he made to God. If I were in that situation, of course I would not receive the Holy Eucharist.

    I’m not sure why you are worried so much about godparents. As long as one godparent is a practicing Catholic, the other (of opposite gender) can be Lutheran or any other sort of baptized, practicing Christian.

    The one thing you can TRY to do is contact his priest and see if he can get dispensation to have the kids baptized at your church, on the condition that he will see to it that they get their religious education in the Catholic church and receive their other Sacraments (penance, communion, confirmation) in the Catholic Church. I think this is rather doubtful, but you can try.

    Both of you were informed about your husband’s parental obligations as a Catholic prior to your marriage. It’s not right to try to back out of it now.

  • Lives7

    Your husband would be in a state of “Mortal” (deadly) sin. A Catholic promises before God before their wedding to raise all children Catholic.

  • Daver

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    You might do well to consider why those “restrictions” are in place.
    I presume you take issue with these “restrictions” because a Catholic Baptism prevents certain Lutherans in your family from standing as godparent(s) to the Baptized child, right?

    It is the responsibility of the godparents to raise and educate their godchild in the beliefs and practices of the Catholic Faith if the parents should become unable or unwilling to do so themselves.
    Who better to do that than Catholics? That is why non-Catholics can’t be godparents.

    Non-Catholics can stand as official Baptism Witnesses in a Catholic Baptism. Perhaps you can consider having your Lutheran relatives stand as Official Baptism Witnesses?

    <>

    Yes – not that the Catholic Church is going to do anything to prevent him from receiving Communion if he were to do it anyway – but, the Truth is, by deliberately choosing to Baptize his child anything other than Catholic is to break a promise he made with God; the promise to raise his child(ren) in the beliefs and practices of the Catholic Faith.

    <>

    It’s too late now but the time to have resolved this issue was sometime after you two got engaged but BEFORE you two got married.

    Would you and your Lutheran godparent-hopefuls consider Official Baptism Witness? This is the resolution to the “problem”.

  • usafbrat64

    First and foremost… you are not having your newborn baptized Catholic or Lutheran. You have having them baptized a Christian, a child of God. Any baptism, performed in any Christian church, as long as it is done “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit” is a valid baptism in almost any other church. This comes before any indoctrination into any denominational group.

    As for Godparents, depending upon the Lutheran church, you may find they are just as picky. My home church requires that at least one of the Godparents be a Lutheran. After all, that is the person who is going to encourage the child, pray for the child, and help them grow in their faith. And the Catholic church feels the same way.

    Also, please remember that Godparents are different than guardians. If something were to happen to myself and my husband, my girls would go live with their legal guardian, not their Godparents!

    Perhaps the best solution would be to find a Catholic Godparent and a Lutheran Godparent, so that both faiths are covered. In the mean time, you two will need to decide how you are going to raise the child… Catholic or Lutheran.

  • Danielle B

    As to your question, no, I don’t think it is true that he would not be permitted to take communion. But there are still some very serious issues.

    If you had a Catholic wedding (that’s a big ‘if’), then your husband made a promise to do everything in his power to raise his children Catholic. (I know this because this promise is required by Church law and no parish would marry you without it.) If he now agrees to baptize a child in another tradition, he is breaking his promise. While this may not require him to stop taking communion, he (and you) should certainly reflect about the meaning and value of that promise. (Misty mentioned this above, and she’s right.)

    Also, I’m not sure what you mean by ‘restrictions on godparents’. It’s true that the godparents must be Catholic (or at least one of them; often one of the two can be a non-Catholic ‘witness’, as long as there is one Catholic godparent), and this is probably what you mean. Well, naturally, if it is a Catholic baptism – and at the baptism, you will both promise to raise the child in the Catholic faith – it makes sense to expect the godparents to be Catholic as well, who will be responsible for the spiritual vocation of the child. I expect you probably want a non-Catholic godparent.

    I think this is sort of a ‘catch-22′, meaning there is no good answer. Based upon your question, it seems (maybe I’m wrong) that you have no particular interest in raising the child Catholic – if that is true, then having a Catholic baptism would be an empty symbol, and perhaps even dishonest. In that case, it’s best not to do it at all. Baptism is not a mere symbol, but an initiation into a particular Christian tradition – if you aren’t going to raise the child in that tradition, don’t baptize him/her into it.

    On the other hand, as I said, IF you got a Catholic wedding (and if not, ignore this part), then your husband (at least) promised to raise the children Catholic, and would be breaking that promise.

    So, I think the larger issue is for the two of you to sort out your own religious affiliation. Children need a stable home without ‘religious schizophrenia’. They can’t hop from church to church, and they don’t want to be subjected to squabbling parents. Decide which tradition your children will be raised in (Lutheran or Catholic), have them baptized in that tradition, and take them to that church. Make the decision once and for all, or else every step along the way (baptism, confirmation, marriage) will turn into another battle. Trust me – it’s better for the kids. As a Catholic, I’d rather a child be raised in a stable, faithful Lutheran home than a schizophrenic one where they never know what to believe.

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