How are baptisms performed by Unitarian Universalists

Would good Christians find uniform baptism sufficient to enter the Church?

The Catholic Church gives a clear answer: those who are baptized are members of the Church. There are those who die outside of the church who we believe are still redeemed, but only in that redemption do they enter the church. But even these should still have some kind of baptism.

Since this answer has received some votes, I will add some clarity.

Baptism makes us members of the Church:

Through baptism we are delivered from sin and are born again as sons of God. We become members of Christ, are accepted into the Church and share its mission: "Baptism is the sacrament of regeneration through water in the Word." (CCC 1213)

Everyone can baptize:

The ordinary ministers of baptism are the bishop and priest, and in the Latin Church also the deacon.57 If necessary, anyone, including an unbaptized person with the necessary intention, can baptize according to the Trinitarian baptismal formula58. The intention is to do what the church does when she baptizes. The Church finds the reason for this possibility in God's universal will for salvation and in the need for baptism for salvation. 59 (CCC 1256)

Nowhere in the CCC have I found anything that succinctly describes the actual rite requirements, but the description of this site is accurate.

The essence of this rite is twofold: pouring water over the head of the person to be baptized (or immersing the person in water); and the words "I baptize you in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit."

Of course, this paragraph lacks the fact that the baptizing person's intention is required.

The inner intention (intentio interna) of the Minister of the Sacrament must "do what the Church does" in the sense of the Dogmatic Council of Trent. The minister of a sacrament can be a schismatic or an excommunicated person, and the sacrament is still in effect as long as that intent is. An example would be the case of an emergency atheist baptizing a newborn baby. Even if the atheist does not personally believe in the sacrament, the sacrament is valid as long as he intends to do what the church is doing in this case, perhaps out of concern for the child.

And so we come to the original point. As long as you are baptizing with water and intending to baptize in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, you are celebrating a valid baptism. And the baptized person will be a member of the Church.


I am honestly skeptical that this is the full Catholic answer that any baptism is effective under any creed.


Yes, baptism as understood by the Orthodox Churches (RC, Anglicans, Eastern Orthodox, etc.) must be performed in a certain way, with a specific understanding of the meaning of the act and the meaning of the words spoken during baptism . The Anglican and Catholic Churches do not accept Mormon baptisms even though they are performed in the name of the Trinity in unity because the Mormon understanding of the Trinity is "unorthodox".

Andreas Blass

According to Catholic doctrine, a non-Catholic can baptize validly, but must at least have the intention "to do what the Church does". In addition, there are requirements for the form of the sacrament (the words prescribed by Christ) and matter (water), but apart from these additional requirements, I doubt that a Unitarian would have the necessary intention, except in very unusual circumstances. If someone who was baptized by a Unitarian became Catholic, he would certainly be baptized - conditionally, if there is a chance that Unitarian baptism would be valid, but probably unconditional.

Ignatius Theophorus

@AndreasBlass As an interesting follow-up, a few years ago the Church decided that Mormon baptisms were also inadequate and that all members of the Mormon Church who were not otherwise baptized would be baptized unconditionally.