The Catholic Church in Belgium has seen a significant rise in adult baptisms. According to CathoBel, the website of the Catholic Church in Belgium, 305 adults are to be baptized this year—a significant increase compared to last year’s 61.
The turnout is a dose of positivity for Belgium. Although the majority of Belgium’s 11.5 million population are baptized Catholics, Mass attendance has reportedly been below 7%. (Read: Uncovering the Mystery of the Pope’s Birth)
Cathobel says the baptisms will take place this year in the Diocese of Tournai and the Archdiocese of Mechelen-Brussels. Among those who sought baptism is a family from Thailand who arrived in Belgium in 1996. Forty-two-year-old Narumol Chanassit, his 18-year-old son Niral, and his eight-year-old daughter Nicole were baptized at Our Lady of the Snows Church in Borgerhout.
It is a common practice among Catholics for their babies to be baptized. Adult baptisms, on the other hand, are considered uncommon and rare these days. Despite this, baptisms among adults are still being encouraged and welcomed by the Church. (Read: Prayer to Live as a Child of God)
At the beginning of the Catholic religion, adult Baptism has been a common practice since the Gospel proclamation was still new to people’s awareness. Today, adults who are baptized need to be initiated in the Christian faith and life as preparation for the other sacraments like the Confirmation and the Eucharist.