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Author Topic: De- Baptism  (Read 4781 times)
Vale
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« Topic Start: March 14, 2009, 07:10:56 am »

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7941817.stm

I downloaded my certificate months ago as a bit of tongue in cheek  fun but I also wish there was a way to "undo" baptism formally.
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« Reply #1: March 14, 2009, 08:45:07 am »

I downloaded my certificate months ago as a bit of tongue in cheek  fun but I also wish there was a way to "undo" baptism formally.

I don't see the point unless it has some legal meaning. I was initiated into a "club" of kids in my neighborhood when I was 7 or 8. We all swore to defend each other to the death against mean parents (or something like that). I consider both the Christian baptism and that club oath about equally meaningful to my life today.
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« Reply #2: March 14, 2009, 09:05:15 am »


I think it's also important to keep in mind that the baptism is an oath taken by the parents, not the child. The parents swear to bring the child up according to the Christian laws/precepts/etc. If the child decides not to stay with that, no harm no foul. That, at least, has always been my understanding.

I never had my daughter baptized, because by that time I'd been out of the church for years. I never got any grief for it from either of my parents, because Mom already knew what was up with me and Dad just figured it wasn't worth arguing about.
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« Reply #3: March 14, 2009, 09:50:17 am »

I think it's also important to keep in mind that the baptism is an oath taken by the parents, not the child. The parents swear to bring the child up according to the Christian laws/precepts/etc. If the child decides not to stay with that, no harm no foul. That, at least, has always been my understanding.

That would be the case if the person in question was born into an infant-baptizing denomination and never went through Confirmation/Affirmation.  Some denominations baptize their members as adults (who are, then, responsible for their own oaths) instead; some people don't come to Christianity until they're old enough to take their own oaths; and infant-baptizing denominations seem to generally have some sort of affirmation-of-baptism ceremony in which the baptized takes the responsibility on themselves.  It's not always a case of "my parents did it and I had no part in it".
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« Reply #4: March 14, 2009, 10:01:56 am »


I gathered from the way the OP wrote that she was from an infant-baptizing group. If I was mistaken, I'm sorry for assuming. My personal experience is with that type; I didn't know there was any other kind until I was out of college. Insulated, I suppose, but that's the way it was around here then.
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« Reply #5: March 14, 2009, 10:11:19 am »

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7941817.stm

I downloaded my certificate months ago as a bit of tongue in cheek  fun but I also wish there was a way to "undo" baptism formally.

I don't see much point to "undoing" the documentation that it was done, as is talked about in the article.  Whether or not what occurs at baptism can be undone is an interesting question though. 

I was taught, and I presume the Catholic Church still teaches, that Baptism imprints an indelible character on a person's soul.  This is why I get infuriated when I hear about things like OB workers "baptizing" all the babies as they bathe them "just in case."  (Yes, I have actually heard of this happening, from other nursing students who were also appalled.)  If you believe this actually makes a permanent imprint on a person's soul, that's a hell of a thing to do by subterfuge, especially to children of non-Christian parents.  (There are other issues around when a non-clergy person has any business baptizing anybody, from the Catholic perspective anyway, but Koi would be more qualified to discuss that than I, and that's getting a bit far afield.)

If you believe that this sacrament does have this effect, and it's not impossible to believe that while simultaneously choosing not to worship in that faith, then I can definitely see wanting to reverse it.  That the Catholic Church believes the effect to be irreversible--and I have no idea what other Christian sects believe about that--doesn't have to mean it's true.  If that's something seriously bothering you, I'd suggest taking it up with your Deity/ies, if any.
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« Reply #6: March 14, 2009, 10:12:19 am »

That would be the case if the person in question was born into an infant-baptizing denomination and never went through Confirmation/Affirmation.  Some denominations baptize their members as adults (who are, then, responsible for their own oaths) instead; some people don't come to Christianity until they're old enough to take their own oaths; and infant-baptizing denominations seem to generally have some sort of affirmation-of-baptism ceremony in which the baptized takes the responsibility on themselves.  It's not always a case of "my parents did it and I had no part in it".

Yup.
At 14 I had to went through Confirmation.
With 14 you are considered mature in regards of choosing your religion by the German law - yeah is if!
I just mentioned slightly that I really would prefer it not to be confirmated.... boy! No chance for me to get out of it.

It is nice to say that at 14 you can choose your religion - but you're still a child then, depending on your family and thus depending on their decisions. And if you're unlucky and your grandparents, parents or whoever is responsible for you does not accept your opinion on the matter, there is no choice.
 
So I went through that ceremony without any meaning to me, and I don't feel it binding because it was not my will to do it.
(Plus I did a different dedication ritual days before , so it was all just show.)
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« Reply #7: March 14, 2009, 10:32:52 am »

Yup.
At 14 I had to went through Confirmation.
With 14 you are considered mature in regards of choosing your religion by the German law - yeah is if!
I just mentioned slightly that I really would prefer it not to be confirmated.... boy! No chance for me to get out of it.

It is nice to say that at 14 you can choose your religion - but you're still a child then, depending on your family and thus depending on their decisions. And if you're unlucky and your grandparents, parents or whoever is responsible for you does not accept your opinion on the matter, there is no choice.
 
So I went through that ceremony without any meaning to me, and I don't feel it binding because it was not my will to do it.
(Plus I did a different dedication ritual days before , so it was all just show.)

yes, to quote my sister,. "Everyone else was doing it."
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« Reply #8: March 14, 2009, 10:40:05 am »

yes, to quote my sister,. "Everyone else was doing it."

My grandma nearly had a heart attack when I said, that I'm not wanting this.
We had a fight. I had to give in. The 'party' after the ceremony was horrible, because I hated that farce. At some point I even was in tears.
It went over - we never talked about 'pagan' issues again and when I really was mature I went to the district court and left church (you have to sign papers there, just an officials thing, not really a court thing.)
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« Reply #9: March 14, 2009, 11:43:11 am »

I don't see the point unless it has some legal meaning.

Oh I know but I just really wish it hadn't been inflicted on me.

I have refused to be a godparent and my own children were not baptised despite the huge fuss THAT caused.
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« Reply #10: March 14, 2009, 11:48:01 am »



It is nice to say that at 14 you can choose your religion - but you're still a child then, depending on your family and thus depending on their decisions. And if you're unlucky and your grandparents, parents or whoever is responsible for you does not accept your opinion on the matter, there is no choice.
 


I was baptised by my grandfather who was a minister so no escape. Fortunately there was no pressure on me to be confirmed ( he died when I was 4).
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« Reply #11: March 14, 2009, 01:15:50 pm »

Oh I know but I just really wish it hadn't been inflicted on me.

I have refused to be a godparent and my own children were not baptised despite the huge fuss THAT caused.

Koi can explain better, about the "permanent mark on your SOUL" thing, but I think the best way of looking at it is like this:  *everything* that happens to us "marks" us in some way, on the soul or otherwise, and we can't, like, magically erase those experiences.  You were baptized, it happened, you can't make that go away.  Just like, if you've converted from one religion to another, your conversion doesn't erase all those years you spent in that other religion, you know?  If it's bugging you, perhaps devising some kind of formal ritual of separation from Christianity for yourself might help -- it doesn't change the fact that you were "initiated," as it were, but it signals, in a ritualized way, that that doesn't MATTER to you anymore.
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« Reply #12: March 14, 2009, 02:13:19 pm »

... I also wish there was a way to "undo" baptism formally.

I went through some similar thoughts a couple of years back.  Part of it was the idea that I had been initiated into a faith without my consent and I was to be judged by the laws and tenets of that faith whether or not I agreed with them.  So, I started looking to see if there was a way to un-do a baptism.  I mean, if the church can cast you out via excommunication then I figured that there had to be something that would call the baptismal oath null and void.  I looked around found some documentation on baptism on catholic.org and even located the website of the diocese in which I was baptised so I could verify the the branch of Catholicism in question.  This was important to me as I also spent a couple of years in Catholic school run by the church where I was baptised.

Beyond all this I also discussed the matter with a good friend who had some insight to the matter.  It was pointed out that the baptism of a baby is an oath made by the parents to raise the child in the faith and that it wasn't the responsibility of the child until the child choose freely to go through with the rite of Confirmation.  I thought about all this and in the end decided that it really didn't matter.  I, myself, had never made the oath and never went through Confirmation.  While I still retain a fondness for Catholic ceremony I had never felt a connection to God or Jesus and had never heard the voice of any of the saints or angels.  This, despite a sincere effort on my part to forge that connection.  The relationship I have with M'Lady is completely different.  Not only is there a connection there but I hear/see/feel Her in my life.  This relationship is far more important to me than undoing a 30+ year old rite in which I had no say to begin with.

My time with the Church helped shape me in part into who I am today.  If I hadn't had the experiences I had with the Church then I honestly can't say that I would have gone off and explored the different paths that I have.  For that I am grateful.  I have chosen to be who I am today rather than react to the past.  Some days I'm better at this than others but in the end it's all I can ask of myself.
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« Reply #13: March 15, 2009, 03:08:10 am »

Yup.
At 14 I had to went through Confirmation.
With 14 you are considered mature in regards of choosing your religion by the German law - yeah is if!
I just mentioned slightly that I really would prefer it not to be confirmated.... boy! No chance for me to get out of it.

well i was baptised, then at age 8 i had to hve the sacrament of the first communion, this is one of the major sacraments of catholicism, its not a practice i agree with, and frankly at that point in my life i barely knew of other religions since i'd been in catholic education since i was 3. and raised in a familly where we were at church every sunday(until i started avoiding it when i was older). then when i was 11 i was confirmed, no one ever asked me if i wanted to do these things, by coming from a known catholic family, and attending a catholic school, it was assumed that this was what i was going to do.

Personally i dont believe that religions should be formalised until you're old enough to make all the other important descisions, for instance, you can't vote until your 18, you can't drink until you;re 18 etc. why can children be confirmed into a religion as a minor? i'm not trying to say that children shouldn't believe in anything, only that i dont feel its appropriate to be confirmed in a religion until you are considered an adult and are considered legally responsible for all your actions.
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« Reply #14: March 15, 2009, 05:58:42 am »

Personally i dont believe that religions should be formalised until you're old enough to make all the other important descisions, for instance, you can't vote until your 18, you can't drink until you;re 18 etc. why can children be confirmed into a religion as a minor? i'm not trying to say that children shouldn't believe in anything, only that i dont feel its appropriate to be confirmed in a religion until you are considered an adult and are considered legally responsible for all your actions.

Agreed. *nodnod*
It is different if you have to defend your opinion at the age of 18 or 14.
(btw. I'm not catholic, I knew that the catholic children in my class were 8-10 when the went through the ceremony you mentioned. But even 14 is too young, though I knew already that I don't want to be christian at that point it did not help me much *lol*)
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