By inviting family members or friends to be godparents you
are giving them a real honour. It suggests that they are
special to you and your family and that they will be a special
person for your child. It is certainly a compliment and it
is also a responsibility.
Godparents will have a particular part to play in your child’s
growing up. How much will depend on a lot of things - whether
they live nearby, how closely they keep in touch with your
family. The main thing is to try to keep in touch so that
your child knows that their godparent is a special person
for them. They may send not only a birthday present, but
also a present on the anniversary of the baptism each year.
As your child grows older, perhaps their godparents could
invite him or her to stay, go on outings, or just spend time
When children become teenagers, godparents can be very important
indeed. If a good friendship has been built up in the early
years, godparents can be trusted adults who are not part
of the family and so are not involved in the tensions that
are part of family life. Godparents come into their own at
this stage as wise and helpful friends and guides.
Godparents can play an important role in your child’s
growing up and the person s/he becomes.
When I first come to visit you in your home I will ask you
for the names and addresses of the people you have chosen
to be godparents for your children so that we can send them
a letter and leaflet about being godparents, and invite them
to the baptism preparation sessions. We will also send them
a copy of the baptism service so they will know what vows
they will be taking on behalf of your child.
the end of the baptism service I will present your godparents
with their godparents’ cards. These cards highlight
what their role as godparents involves. They state:
My Christian responsibility as a godparent means that I should:
1. Pray regularly for him / her.
2. Set him / her an example of Christian
3. Help him / her to grow in the faith of
God, Father, Son
and Holy Spirit, in which
he / she was baptized.
4. Give every encouragement to him / her to
and to fight against evil.
5. Help him / her to look forward to his /
Rather than tucking these cards away in a drawer, it is a
good idea to display them on a dressing table or even stick
them to the fridge with a fridge magnet so that they can
be seen on a regular basis.
If the people you have chosen to be godparents feel they
can’t take the promises in the baptism service, then
they can be sponsors instead. This means that they will not
have to take the vows required of godparents.
The general rule is to have three godparents, two of the
same sex as your child. However, you can have just two, or
you can ask up to four.
You can read more about godparents on pages 8 & 9 of
the booklet “Your baby’s baptism in the Church