The Requirements of a Sponsor
The role of sponsor is an important one for the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation. The church sees the sponsor a s 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.
In this case, the Catholic who is younger than 16 must be fully initiated.
· The sponsor must have an active life of faith in the Church and provide good example.
(a) Someone married outside the Church is not able to receive Communion and is not able to be a sponsor.
(b) Also, a Catholic who has left the Church is not able to be a sponsor of a new member into the Church.
(c) 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.
Sponsors are required to obtain a sponsor certificate from their own parish. Sponsors who are not in the Diocese of Rockville Centre should call their parish rectory to inquire what is required to obtain a sponsor certificate.
Sponsors who are in the Diocese of Rockville Centre are required to fill out a form enumerating the requirements to validly fulfill the role of sponsor in the Catholic Church and swearing that they meet the criteria. Normally, this form must also be signed by a pastor or his delegate. However, due to the problems brought on by the pandemic, until further notice, the requirement for a pastor's signature is removed. The sponsor over the age of 16 and fully initiated still must swear by signing the form that he or she meets all the criteria to be a sponsor, but there is no longer a need for the confirming pastor's or delegate's signature. Parishioners of the Diocese of Rockville Centre can download the form www.drvc.org/wp-content/uploads/Baptism-and-Confirmation-Sponsor-Information-2-29-16.pdf
Once the sponsor has obtained the sponsor certificate, you can either scan and email it as an attachment to firstname.lastname@example.org, or mail the form to Office of Religious Education, 450 Franklin Ave., Garden City, NY 11530