What are babies required to wear for Baptism?

I just scheduled Jacob’s Baptism (he should have been Baptized months ago but that’s a long story)…Is it absolutely necessary for him to show up in one of those expensive Baptism outfits sold in department stores? As much as I’d love to buy one, I just cannot afford it right now. In fact, I don’t think I can afford much of anything to put on him for this special occasion.

Does he have to wear white? What if he just wore a nice, dressy outfit?

No it is certainly NOT required to wear white.

In fact, in many cases, a small white stole will be provided after the Baptism ( our parish does this).

We never bought one of those dept store outfits for any of our children. (Granted, we did have the gown my wife was baptized in and have used that.)

One tip though, the priest or deacon will need access to the chest area to annoint with Chrism. So have him wear something that has that type of access (and something you won’t mind having a slight Chrism stain)

is he being dunked or sprinkled? ask at your pre-baptismal class. If dunked, just a onesie so you can undress and dress him quickly, and a blanket or one-piece jammie thing. If sprinkled and you want a special outfit, target, walmart or the dollar store have cute little boy outfits for about $10. The parish usually supplies a symbolic white garment like a bib, or he can wear white, or just have a white blanket to wrap him in (I just used a diaper once, but I guess that is tacky).

Required? Nothing, but I’m pretty sure they’d appreciate a diaper, to avoid any ummm “additions” to the font water. A “white garment” is given at baptism. Usually this is just a stole, although in our current church they look like bibs that get laid across the baby’s front, but do not tie around the neck. So generally you want the kid dressed in something else.

A nice outfit to waer to church is great, white is actually optional, but now-a-days most people have the kid fully dressed in a white outfit to start with. They do have some very reasonable baptismal gowns available, less than $20, as long as you don’t want elaborate lace flowing gown, with matching socks, soft booties, and bonnet.

Do you have any Catholic friends you could borrow one from? I’ve borrowed two baptismal gowns from my friend, and made my daughter’s dress for hers (she was 4 when baptised, so one of those baby getups wouldn’t have worked).

I second Puzzleannie’s words.

Dunking suggests a different strategy than pouring.

In the former case you will most likely bring the child dressed in ordinary clothes which are easy to remove. He’ll be dressed in his baptismal attire AFTER the baptism. In the latter case you’ll bring your child already dressed in the baptismal outfit.

Most parishes provide a little token white garment. In my kid’s cases, the oldest got a little bib-like garment. The younger two got something more like a pancho.

Something that will prevent the baby’s producing an America’s-Funniest-Video fountain moment.


LOL. :smiley:

We teach baptism classes. There is no clothing requirement at all. The parish provides a white garment during part of the baptismal rite and the words are expressed, you have put on Christ, and you have become a new creation.

There are no requirements, but frequently people traditionally will dress their child in a white garment.
Some families use heirloom baptismal garments handed down from generation to generation.

The only instruction we give is during another part of the baptismal rite, holy oil is placed on the breastbone of the child, therefore a couple of buttons must be loosened to allow the celebrant to put the oil on the child.

Happy Baptism Day…Welcome to the Church founded on Jesus…

He should wear either white or absolutely nothing.
However it is in no sense necessary to spend money you can’t afford on designer clothes. You ought to be able to get a white nightgown from somewhere.

i was stopping in on another matter, and I have to say that is **not **true. I was baptized in a beige suit at age 5. My sisters wore floral prints (ages 3 and 1 1/2), and my brother wore a red plaid short set (infant). Our baptisms are still valid.

Baptized 40 babies in English ceremony yesterday, 18 in Spanish, they wore every variety of garment you can imagine on an infant or small child, which did not matter in the least, since each is presented with a symbolic “white garment” a bib-like piece of non-woven fabric with an embroidered cross, made and donated by ladies of the parish. Don’t sweat it. Those in the Spanish ceremony tended to have more lavish outfits, as some consider that the duty of the madrina to provide. One kid looked like he was going to the prom, white tux size 3.

At our parish regardless of whether the baptism is by pouring or by immersion – and that’s up to the parents – the godmother carries the white garment to the font at the time of baptism and it is presented to the baby at the appropriate time in the rite “see in this white garment…” Then baby is taken away to be dressed, then brought back for the presentation of the light and the Ephpheta rite. We don’t provide a white garment/shawl/poncho. We tell parents that the baptismal garment they get for their child must be white but that it can be as simple as a white sleeper or a white nightie.

Older children have been known to opt for an alb which, among all the vestments, is the one that represents baptism.

Perfectly true – since the white garment is a symbol of the sacrament that has been received, it should be put on AFTER the baptism. You don’t slip your wedding band on when you head for the church to get married.

A diaper is a good start. LOL

He should not show up in white. He will be dressed in something white AFTER the Baptism. It may be provided by the parish, check with them. Otherwise a simply white outfit would be fine to dress him in AFTER the Baptism.

When we first started doing that it was a hard sell but as soon as we used the wedding ring analogy people just ‘got it’.

I’ve personally never seen the sense of giving a baby a bib when the words “See in this white garment …” are said. But it was just as bad when the priest didn’t acknowledge what the kid was already wearing and touched what was usually an elaborate white gown with a corner of a white towel as he pronounced the words.

Of course, in many Eastern rites (eg Malankara) and the Orthodox churches babies are immersed naked.

In our parish those babies who are baptized by immersion are immersed naked.

I still think a diaper is a good idea!