Naming your baby is a huge honor and all the parents put in a lot of time and thought to select a beautiful and best name. If the care with which these parents choose their baby’s name is any indication, all of these babies will realize how much they are loved.
One of the common practices that parents follow when picking Catholic baby names is naming their kid after a saint. Choosing a name for your kid is an exciting and maybe challenging task, therefore it must be done with care.
But is naming a child after a saint canonical or a tradition that most Catholics follow?
Canon 855 of the Code of Canon Law states:
“Parents, sponsors, and the pastor are to take care that a name foreign to Christian sensibility is not given.”
Hence, the canon does not specifically require the Catholics to name their babies after saints. It only restricts us from choosing names that are charged with negative implications and that go against the Christianity faith. If the parents choose an offensive name, the priest who has to baptize the baby and the godparents have the right and obligation to object to the name or suggest good names.
Being a parent is a great opportunity to give a beautiful name to your kid. But the bigger chance is to nurture a kid who understands God and tries in every step of life to follow the path of God.
Why do parents name their babies after saints?
Naming a child after a saint or a biblical hero serves as a reminder for the child and everyone else that God is calling that child to holiness and heaven. It is a connection and continuity between earthly and eternal life.
Here are some reasons why naming your child after a saint will stand as a beautiful reminder of spiritual conversion.
Expressing faith in God
Naming our child after a saint is to reaffirm our faith in the communion of saints. We believe in it when we recite the Apostles Creed. We recognize that we are united spiritually to the saints who have done good deeds and continue to do so in heaven. By naming our children after saints, we endorse our faith in their power and allow them to be a part of our child’s life.
Set an example
One of the earnest desires of parents is to inculcate good values in their children. Saints are noted for their exceptional faith in God and are examples for leading exemplary life. By naming our child after a saint we are providing them with an opportunity to connect to God and learn more about the saints and their inspiring tales. It goes without saying that it is challenging to find suitable role models for our kids in today’s present world. But with saints, we can proudly tell our kids to emulate their teachings. They are a fantastic source of awareness into how we can follow our catholic faith. They inspire kids in the way they live and behave with others, in the decisions they make, and in the way they act.
Inspiration to stay true to the catholic faith
We respect saints because we know that their faith in God was unshakeable even in testing times. And it is a lesson we learn from them to overcome adversity by putting immense trust in God and never backtracking whatever the hardships. Naming the babies after saints serves as a constant reminder to face challenges in life with a smile.
There are umpteen ways to teach our children to invoke the blessings of saints and God whenever we face challenging situations in life. One of them is naming them after the great saints. Another way is to buy catholic clothes for toddlers and children that have prints of great saints on them. Gift it to your child for baptism or even at other times to serve as a reminder that their name is special.
They age well
Some of the names rise and fall in popularity. But a saint’s name never entirely goes out of style. It will never sound too odd and is easy to remember and pronounce. And it is less of a risk than a name that may be trending at this moment but will disappear in the next couple of years or in the next generation.
They are meaningful and unique
The names of saints have a lot of meaning to them. Every parent would want their children to be reminded of whom they have been named after. After all, it’s a comfort for the parents to aspire for the very best, that their children may one day, like their namesake, make a difference in this world.
Choosing a saint’s name is not something unusual. It has been followed by traditions. But some of the saints’ names are unique and rare. It is a name that stands out in a crowd. Though it is expected, the name should not be a burden to pronounce or remember.
Relate it to family history
Most parents approach the task of naming their child with already a few favorites in their mind. God works goodness through the things we are drawn to. Sometimes, the saint names match with the name of a grandparent or long-lost near one. It brings the family together and provides a sense of belonging to the children.
Inspire others too
Naming our child after a saint is more than just a personal choice. Imagine if someone asks us why we have named our child so and we tell them about its significance and narrate the story of the saint to them. Wouldn’t it inspire them too? By doing so we are guiding them to follow the path of Christianity. Spreading the gospel is one of the responsibilities of Catholics and reinforcing our faith in our daily decisions is one way to do so. Reaching out to people and leading them to a life in Christ, is there anything better than it?
Finally, as parents, what matters is to make sure that you give your kid deep roots to grow their faith. Naming your child is a sacred act that participates in God’s creative plan. It is a solemn duty to be carried out with prayer and joyfulness rather than done carelessly. The choice of a name can have a profound impact on the child’s development and self-identity. So, why not give your child a saint’s sacred name and inspire them to live a life of virtue?At Catholic Connect Shop, we stock catholic clothes for toddlers and kids such as t-shirts, hoodies, and sweatshirts with the picture of great saints printed on them. You can present it to your child as a beautiful gift for baptism to reinforce the faith of Christianity.