Naming a child is an important task for parents, because it gives children a sense of identity and belonging to their family and to God, Pope Francis said.
“Without a name, we remain unknown, without rights and duties. God calls each one of us by name, loving us individually in the concreteness of our history,” the pope said on 18th April during his weekly general audience.
“Therefore, the name is important. Parents think of the name to give to their child already before birth,” he said. “This, too, is part of the expectation of a child who, in his or her name, will have an original identity, including for the Christian life linked to God.”
Continuing his series of Easter-season talks on baptism, the pope said that a person’s name, asked during the welcoming rite of the sacrament, “takes us out of anonymity” and is the first step in a person’s journey as a Christian.
“Baptism ignites the personal vocation to live as Christians, which will develop throughout one’s life. It implies a personal response and not a borrowed answer that is ‘copied and pasted’,” he said.
Picture: Pope Francis smiles as a papal security guard holds up a baby during his general audience in St Peter’s Square at the Vatican on 18th April. (CNS photo/Paul Haring).