The Important Role of Godparents in Your Child's Life

The Important Role of Godparents in Your Child's Life

Last update: 05 December, 2017

There are people that make a lasting mark on our lives and those of our children. Naturally, grandparents, aunts and uncles, and cousins have a place in our children’s life, but there are people that we simply choose to integrate in our families. In this post, we are going to talk about godparents and the importance of these figures in the lives of our children.

As parents, we always want to be there for our children, and we want to make sure they have everything they need. We worry about their emotional well-being. We pay attention to the things and the people that surround them.

Our greatest desire is that, wherever our children are, they are surrounded by good people. From that desire comes the importance of strengthening family ties.

We are talking about two people that, according to tradition, some parents choose for the baptism of their child. We usually choose two godparents: a man and a women. These two people don’t necessarily need to be a married couple or even to be romantically involved, but they should both be equipped and willing to tend to our child just as any other family member would.

What is the role of godparents in a child’s life?

From a religious point of view, godparents have the responsibility of guaranteeing that their godchild is brought up under Christian precepts. This is a commitment that they enter into at the time of the child’s baptism.

A godparent’s role in a child’s life is to guide the child down the path of faith, just as our ancestors and the Church taught us in the past.

But the truth is, being a godparent shouldn’t be limited to religious instruction. In most cases, godparents are chosen to act almost as secondary parents; a support system for your little one, and for the adolescent and adult that he or she will become in the future.

Being chosen as a godparent is a great honor, and it is also an immense responsibility.

Normally, parents choose their child’s godparents based on friendship, reciprocity, or even as a result of social pressures. In some cases, these are valid reasons. But when the time comes to choose the godparents of your children, you should ask yourselves if the people  you are choosing can really provide what you really want for our children.

Godparents should be people we can really trust and who are truly ready and willing to accept the responsibility of making a life-long commitment to being part of your child’s life.

Sometimes, the most ideal choice is to select someone that is already part of your family, or to choose a person whose friendship you know will stand the test of time.

The characteristics of an ideal godparent

important role of godparents in your child's life

When I asked my parents why they had chosen the people they did to be my godparents – those two people who even today play an important role in my adult life – my mother and father responded that they saw that both of them were truly admirable people. These are some specific characteristics that our ideal godparents should embody:

  • Without a doubt, they should like children. It’s true that your little one won’t be a child forever, but the empathy, recognition and family connection will begin when your son or daughter is just a child.
  • Be sure that the person you are choosing is loyal. If the person has already proven to be loyal both in good times as well as when the going gets tough, then you know the same will be true when it comes to your child.
  • When the time comes to baptize your child, the Church will demand that the godparents meet certain requirements. If you plan on taking this step, find out beforehand what these requirements are, and make sure that the future godparents fulfil them.
  • Common objectives and vision. Although it isn’t obligatory or decisive, it’s important that your little one’s godparents share the values and interests that you will impart to your child.

If choosing your child’s godparents becomes difficult, remember that you should choose from among the people that you would trust, without a doubt, to care for the well-being and integrity of your child if for some reason you were not there to do it yourself.

Giving your child the opportunity to have good godparents will help your little one to really value the people who are closest to him or her. Your child will know that you chose two people that are are trustworthy and who he or she could depend on in the case of your absence.

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This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.