Baptism Affected by Canada’s Same-Sex Union Bill

OTTAWA, JULY 15, 2005 ( The Catholic Church may not be able to baptize children of same-sex couples, if both parents insist on signing the certificate of baptism, says the archbishop of Quebec.

“According to our canon law, we cannot accept the signatures of two fathers or two mothers as parents of an infant,” said Cardinal Marc Ouellet.

His comment came as the Civil Marriage Act was expected to become law next week.

Benoit Bariteau, associate general secretary of the bishops’ conference, clarified later that that the Church would only deny baptism if both fathers, or both mothers, insisted on signing the baptismal certificate.

The Ottawa Citizen newspaper reported that Bariteau explained that if one signature is sufficient for both parents, the Church would not refuse to baptize children of a same-sex couple.