In answer to your question, baptism itself is not considered a “means to salvation” in the Catholic Church, but belief in Jesus Christ as the One sent by God with the good news (Great news!) that we are all loved immeasurably by the God who created us and only wishes that we accept this love and love our neighbors – THAT is the means to salvation. Obviously, when an infant is baptized in the Catholic Church, the child is unable to make such a commitment of belief, so we consider baptism a “sacrament of initiation” and later on, when the person is a teenager, have an additional “sacrament of initiation,” – confirmation – when the person makes a more informed commitment to their faith.
Thank you, Michael Hovey- Coordinator, Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit, for answering our question this week! To learn more about Michael, please click here.