Reader Jordan broke away from Christianity a while back. His wife is an agnostic but still “culturally Catholic,” meaning she attends services with her family when she’s visiting them, among other things. She likes the tradition and ceremonies but doesn’t hold Catholic beliefs.
They’ve talked about having kids and the issue of getting the child baptized comes up frequently. Jordan is very much against it. His wife likes the idea. It’s become a point of contention and Jordan made a list of the pros and cons.
His reasons for the future child to get baptized:
- It would be a beautiful ceremony.
- If the child grows up and wants to be Catholic, he or she would have completed the baptismal sacrament.
- There could be a lot of criticism from/conflict with her Catholic family if the baby is not baptized.
- The baby wouldn’t remember the baptism, so what’s the big deal?
His reasons for the future child not to get baptized:
- Neither of us believe in the concept of salvation or damnation; our infant will be innocent and blameless without superstition.
- I do not want to pay homage to a corrupt, hate-filled church.
- Our child should not be subject to a religious rite before he/she has a choice to do so.
- The chain of a faulty “family tradition” needs to be broken at some point; why not with us?
It’s a decision each couple with religious family members has to make for themselves.
Ultimately, as atheists, we know the baptism won’t actually do anything, but it’s the principle of the matter. At what point does the lunacy stop?
What would you advise Jordan to do?