Arranging your Child’s Baptism
Have You Been Asked to Be a Sponsor for Baptism or Confirmation? We receive many requests regarding being a sponsor or godparent for Baptism and Confirmation. “Sponsor” (godparent) is a sacramental ministry. The sponsor takes part in the ritual as a Catholic and provides example from her/his life through living and acting as a full member of the Catholic Church. Because of the seriousness of this ministry, the Church has the following requirements:
- The sponsor must be a full member of the Catholic Church through Baptism and Confirmation and Eucharist and at least 16 years old (the responsibilities of this ministry are undertaken by an adult).
- The sponsor must be a Catholic living an active life in the Church who provides good example. Someone married outside the Church is not able to receive Communion and is not able to be a sponsor. Also, a Catholic who has left the Church is not able to be a sponsor of a new member into the Church.
A Word on Confirmation Preparation with Bishop William Murphy
Planning a Loved One's Funeral
Our parish community recognizes the right of every Catholic to have a funeral mass. We do our best, as well, to send a representative from the parish to pray with the family and guests at the funeral home, usually on the afternoon before the funeral mass. Should there be any difficulty with the donation to the parish or the music fees, we do not let that stand in the way of the celebration of your loved one's funeral mass.
Many families wish to plan the funeral liturgy for their loved one. When they make the arrangements with the local funeral director, the materials for planning are given them at that time. The funeral home will also fax St. Elizabeth with the details that the family has decided upon. The St. Elizabeth fee is $300 for the Church; $125 for the Organist and $100 for the Cantor.
During the funeral mass the family can choose the first and second readings that are proclaimed during the liturgy of the word. Should a family member or friend who is Catholic feel comfortable in doing one of the readings, they are encouraged to do so. Also included in this booklet are suggested hymns to be sung during the mass.
Can Catholics be Cremated?
See this short explanation of the Church policy on this subject.
Setting a Wedding Date
Congratulations on your engagement!
We are happy to welcome parishioners to celebrate their wedding here at the parish of St. Elizabeth. Your first step is to arrange for the wedding interview with the pastor or the deacon at the Parish Center. At the conclusion of the interview you will be able to set your wedding date. You will also be given a variety of information about celebrating your wedding here in the parish.
We encourage you to read our Marriage FAQ as well.
On-line marriage materials: We encourage you to download and print our Guide to Planning and Celebrating Your Wedding in St. Elizabeth of Hungary Parish.
Going to Confession
All are welcome to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation and experience the forgiving love of God!
Each week the sacrament is celebrated before the 5:00 p.m. mass, Saturday, 4:00 – 4:45 p.m. There are two reconciliation rooms on either side of the Blessed Sacrament Chapel on the far side of the church as you enter from the gathering area. In both reconciliation rooms there is a choice to celebrate the sacrament face-to-face, or to kneel behind the screen and celebrate anonymously.
Please check the bulletin for special celebrations of the sacrament throughout the year. For example, we celebrate during Lent with the families of the parish on weekdays, and usually during the annual Lenten Parish Mission.
The following links may be helpful in understanding the Sacrament of Penance. They were written by the United States Catholic Bishops:
How can I set a date to get married at St. Elizabeth?
Do I have to be a parishioner to get married at St. Elizabeth?
Yes. We reserve our church for the weddings of our parishioners. If you grew up here and your parents still are registered in our parish, we will be happy to work with you to be married here. Remember, you can choose to be married in the parish church of the groom or the parish church of the bride.
When should I call and make an appointment for the wedding interview?
Do it right away! Be careful of setting a date at the reception hall before seeing the priest or deacon at the parish. We would love to have you married in your parish church and would not want the date to be already taken!
What about getting married in the catering hall or out-of-doors?
Your sacraments have already taken place in the parish church -- your baptism, communion and confirmation. So, too your wedding. Catholics marry indoors and the sacred space of the church where they exchange their marriage vows. Also, beware of catering halls that say “we can get a Catholic priest for you.” The marriage will probably be invalid.
Can I get married at a nuptial mass?
Yes. Catholics usually get married at a nuptial mass. As Catholic husband and Catholic wife, receiving the Body and Blood of the Lord is a deep sign of the unity of husband and wife.
What if my fiancé(e) is not a Catholic?
During your wedding interview you will be asked about being open to having children in the future and raising them in the Catholic Church. This is an important question to talk about with your future spouse who does not share your Catholic faith. We will be happy to help you with this conversation and can recommend some great resources for you! Although you will not be able to have a nuptial mass, we will obtain the necessary permission from the bishop and you will be married at a wedding service in church.
What about planning my nuptial mass or wedding service?
You get to choose the music and readings and prayers for your wedding. It helps to make it more personal for you. At the wedding interview you will receive a booklet with all the selections.
Do I need to do Pre-Cana?
Yes. We have a wonderful Pre-Cana ministry here at St. E’s. These couples will help you prepare for the sacrament of marriage. We have sessions in the fall and the spring. You will also be asked to do “FOCCUS” together which is a great way that you will learn about your compatibility on a wide range of issues.
What about everything else?
There are lots of details (music, rehearsal, flowers, etc.) which are explained in the parish wedding booklet that we will give you at your interview.
The Requirements of Sponsor: Baptism, Confirmation and RCIA
(notes prepared by the Diocese of Rockville Centre)
The role of sponsor is an important one for the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation. The Church sees the sponsor as a fully-initiated Catholic who supports the one receiving the sacrament with example and instruction. Because of the seriousness of this ministry, the Church has the following requirements:
· The sponsor must be a fully-initiated member of the Catholic Church through Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist.
· The sponsor must be at least sixteen (16) years of age.
o The minister of the sacrament can dispense from this requirement.
o In this case, the Catholic who is younger than 16 must be fully initiated and meet all the other requirements.
· The sponsor must have an active life of faith in the Church and provide good example.
o Someone married outside the Church is not able to receive Communion and is not able to be a sponsor.
o Also, a Catholic who has left the Church is not able to be a sponsor of a new member into the Church.
o Therefore, a Catholic who has left the Catholic Church cannot be a sponsor, and cannot be a "Christian witness" if they join another Christian communion.
- The sponsor cannot be either parent.
- When there are two sponsors, they are “spiritual parents” and are to be a godfather and godmother.
Christian Witness – (A baptized non-Catholic Christian)
Provided there is one Catholic sponsor, a baptized non-Catholic Christian may serve as a Christian witness. This person is a Christian witness and not a sponsor.
Requirements to be a Christian Witness:
- at least sixteen years old
- a validly baptized Christian
- living an upright life
- cannot be either parent
- cannot be a Catholic who has left the Church
- A Christian witness may never be a non-baptized person. For example, Jewish or Muslim godparents are not permitted by universal church law.
- The notation "Christian witness" is placed under the name of the non-Catholic Christian witness in the baptismal register.