YES, THIS IS REAL: New Calendar Priest Asks 3-year Old For Consent to Baptism(VIDEO)

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YES, THIS IS REAL: New Calendar Priest Asks 3-year Old For Consent to Baptism(VIDEO)

In what may be the strangest story to make NFTU yet, a New Calendar priest in Germany asked a three year old for consent to baptism– and when the three year old said “no”, the priest took off his stole and walked.

Keep Talking Greece reported on the story and that the priest was questioned by local media, giving odd answers to why he’d refuse to baptize a child, citing a personal “bad experience”.

While there may be hidden reasons (it’s been claimed the parents didn’t show up very often to Church), a priest refusing to baptize a recalcitrant toddler is unheard of. Apparently the priest is unaware that this is a large part of what sponsors are for– to answer for children incapable of their own decisions.

Unless he thought that pre-schoolers are fully functioning adults?

Feel free to comment, as this editor is, well, at a loss. Video below.

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  • Makes sense to me. First of all, serious Orthodox parents would not have waited until age 3 to baptize their child. So if the priest knew they were not serious, that would be a good indicator that there was a problem. Getting a pair of unfaithful godparents to “take the fall” is obviously not a serious pastoral situation. A priest who knows the parents aren’t really Orthodox and neither are the godparents is sinning if he goes ahead with the baptism. So knowing all that, if the child was ademant against baptism, that would give me pause as well. I think he did the right thing given the circumstances, and to use this as fodder against the New Calendarists is a cheap shot, IMO.

    • Deacon Joseph @ NFTU

      I get your point, but– how did it get this far to begin with? It got to the ceremony, the priest refused, and the second priest did it. I’m not going to make a comment on fees, but he even indicated he had a bad feeling in catechetical interviews. In such a case, you don’t humiliate the family in church by taking the word of a three-year old. You stop the process early.

      It sets a bad precedent. What if they were good parishioners and the child said no? A priest putting the responsibility on a three-year old isn’t doing his job.

      • I think we’re addressing different concerns here. If the issue is how this got so far, yes, I agree. If he did have a bad feeling in interviews, then he should have stopped it before the liturgy occurred, and not embarrassed the family. Perhaps though his conscience just pricked him at that moment, after he had previously been going back and forth. When I served as a priest, there were a few times that things were murky and could have gone either way, and I had to “go with my gut” in the end. But I did always try to not offend people (some people got offended anyway).

        As far as “what if they were good parishioners”…unless they were living in Tristan da Cunha the past 3 years, there is no reason they should have waited 3 years to baptize their child, so I doubt they are good parishioners. I only baptized one baby in my tenure, but I did it at 40 days and it went smooth. Conversely, I’ve seen toddlers over a year struggle and fight. The practice of waiting longer and longer among modern “Orthodox” is disturbing.

  • Marlon Scott

    Gentlemen,

    Is all well with Father Enoch? His blog is removed.

    • Dcn Joseph Suaiden

      He is ok, but is trying to reduce his online presence.

  • Ernest

    I did something that you have not even the slightest idea about Anastasios, I raised my son by myself from the time he was 3 until 13 and yes, I had him baptized at 3. “Serious about Orthodoxy”? Please don’t open your own can of worms.

    • Most of the people whom I knew over the years that waited past 6 months to baptize their kids were uninterested in religion. By the time they baptized their kids, they were too big to fit in the font that New Calendarists use and so got a pouring baptism. That is what I was referring to. I was not trying to knock on people in difficult situations or with unique situations. Yeah, I have not the slightest idea about your situation. From what I know about you through our online interaction, I respect you. I’m sure you had a legitimate reason to wait. I’m sorry I painted too broad a stroke. It wasn’t my intention to offend people in your situation.

  • NA

    It should be noted that she was eventually baptized. A family member explains what happens, in Greek, in one of the comments on the video.