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Just wondering if it would be okay or not appropriate to perform baptism in emergency situations, particularly when I work in the neonatal intensive care unit. Even if parents are not aware of it? Not trying to be sneaky, just want to help as much as possible.
Okay I just found my answer. My hands are tied unless requested!
Uh, I'm pretty sure that you can baptize a baby you believe is in danger, regardless if someone wants or doesn't want it. 
But if you did it without permission, wouldn't you have to tell them if the baby survived?  It wouldn't be intentional, but baptism can't be repeated without sacrilege, so wouldn't we have an obligation to tell the parents what happened?
I think you should.

Why worry about someone's sensibilities if their child's life is in danger?  It's a question of the child's eternal salvation.

My oldest son was born 2 months per-mature over 30 years ago.  He was baptized immediately by an employee who was also a Deacon.
I love that man to this day.  Smile

Candyapple, I'd love to hear what you learned that gives you the impression that it would be wrong.

I'm curious about the two baptism's being a sacrilege .  As it turns out..I may have been baptized twice out of ignorance.  I doubt God will punish anyone involved because of someone’s lack of memory and or bad paperwork.
Baptism should only be administered when permission is given. In the case of children there needs to be the permission, expressed or tacit, of a parent or guardian,, unless they are abandoned, or say in the case of a mother giving birth and dying. Perhaps this could be compromised when the child is in his teens, or maybe younger. I would think the earliest is the age of reason, about 7 years of age. hard question for children, but for infants you need the permission. This is an old principle of the Church, but error of the side of caution and baptize if there seems to be no other choice and death is imminent.

As for repeated baptism, some of you may be referring to what priests call "supplying the ceremony" in which they performs the exorcisms etc which were not performed at the emergency baptism.
Here's what I found regarding emergency baptism.  From what I gather, if it is within your power to confer this sacrament in cases of emergency and you fail to do so, you are considered guilty of the loss of a soul.  I'm not sure if you would need the permission of the parents or guardian.  That is a question we should ask a priest.  Obviously if the infant survives you would have a duty to inform whoever is responsible for the child.

(b) In case of necessity, baptism can be administered lawfully and validly by any person whatsoever who observes the essential conditions, whether this person be a Catholic layman or any other man or woman, heretic or schismatic, infidel or Jew. The essential conditions are that the person pour water upon the one to be baptized, at the same time pronouncing the words: "I baptize thee in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost." Moreover, he must thereby intend really to baptize the person, or technically, he must intend to perform what the Church performs when administering this sacrament. The Roman Ritual adds that, even in conferring baptism in cases of necessity, there is an order of preference to be followed as to the minister. This order is: if a priest be present, he is to be preferred to a deacon, a deacon to a subdeacon, a cleric to a layman, and a man to a woman, unless modesty should require (as in cases of childbirth) that no other than the female be the minister, or again, unless the female should understand better the method of baptizing. The Ritual also says that the father or mother should not baptize their own child, except in danger of death when no one else is at hand who could administer the sacrament. Pastors are also directed by the Ritual to teach the faithful, and especially midwives, the proper method of baptizing. When such private baptism is administered, the other ceremonies of the rite are supplied later by a priest, if the recipient of the sacrament survives.

This right of any person whatsoever to baptize in case of necessity is in accord with the constant tradition and practice of the Church. Tertullian (De Bapt., vii) says, speaking of laymen who have an opportunity to administer baptism: "He will be guilty of the loss of a soul, if he neglects to confer what he freely can." St. Jerome (Adv. Lucif., ix): "In case of necessity, we know that it is also allowable for a layman [to baptize]; for as a person receives, so may he give." The Fourth Council of the Lateran (cap. Firmiter) decrees: "The Sacrament of Baptism ... no matter by whom conferred is available to salvation."St. Isidore of Seville (can. Romanus de cons., 'iv) declares: "The Spirit of God administers the grace of baptism, although it be a pagan who does the baptizing." Pope Nicholas I teaches the Bulgarians (Resp. 104) that baptism by a Jew or a pagan is valid. Owing to the fact that women are barred from enjoying any species of ecclesiastical jurisdiction, the question necessarily arose concerning their ability to bestow valid baptism. Tertullian (De Bapt., xvii) strongly opposes the administration of this sacrament by women, but he does not declare it void. In like manner, St. Epiphanius (Eisen, Ixxix) says of females: "Not even the power of baptizing has been granted to them", but he is speaking of solemn baptism, which is a function of the priesthood. Similar expressions may be found in the writings of other Fathers, but only when they are opposing the grotesque doctrine of some heretics, like the Marcionites, Pepuzians, and Cataphrygians, who wished to make Christian priestesses of women. The authoritative decision of the Church, however, is plain. Pope Urban II (c. Super ouibus, xxx, 4) writes: "It is true baptism if a woman in case of necessity baptizes a child in the name of the Trinity." The Florentine decree for the Armenians says explicitly: "In case of necessity, not only a priest or a deacon, but even a layman or woman, nay even a pagan or heretic may confer baptism." The main reason for this extension of power as to the administration of baptism is of course that the Church has understood from the beginning that this was the will of Christ. St. Thomas (III, Q. lxvii, a. 3) says that owing to the absolute necessity of baptism for the salvation of souls, it is in accordance with the mercy of God, who wishes all to be saved, that the means of obtaining this sacrament should be put, as far as possible, within the reach of all; and as for that reason the matter of the sacrament was made of common water, which can most easily be had, so in like manner it was only proper that every man should be made its minister. Finally, it is to be noted that, by the law of the Church, the person administering baptism, even in cases of necessity, contracts a spiritual relationship with the child and its parents. This relationship constitutes an impediment that would make a subsequent marriage with any of them null and void unless a dispensation were obtained beforehand. See Affinity (in Canon Law).
(05-12-2011, 02:08 PM)Scriptorium Wrote: [ -> ]As for repeated baptism, some of you may be referring to what priests call "supplying the ceremony" in which they performs the exorcisms etc which were not performed at the emergency baptism.

Isn't there a place during the Sacrament where the Priest can insert, "If you're not already baptized" if there is any doubt about a previous baptism?
(05-12-2011, 07:50 AM)verenaerin Wrote:I worked in the PICU. When I have taken care of kids that where dying, I have baptized them. I have a whole slew of little ones in Heaven. Another population worth considering is the severe MRCP group. We all know that eventually they are going to die, be it 6 months or 6 years. Poor babies. As a NICU nurse it is a different call and might not be apprpriate, but I can see it so in the PICU, where these little guys end up dying.

This is absolutely the right thing to do.

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