In news reports yesterday, I did notice a high profile Baptism/Confirmation in the Anglican Church. Commentary and quotes here.
It’s always interesting to see what Catholic journalists make of such things. From the Aleteia report:
Additionally, the water used for the baptism was reportedly from the River Jordan and Markle was accompanied by two sponsors.
Strictly speaking, godparents stand with a baptized person.
Markle was never baptized, even though she was raised by a father who was Episcopalian and a mother who belonged to a different Protestant denomination. After her parents were divorced, she attended the Roman Catholic Immaculate Heart girl’s school in Los Angeles.
I don’t find myself terribly bothered with a Lent initiation. I did note that Aleteia’s Mr Kosloski neglected to mention Ms Markle was confirmed in this 45-minute liturgy. I know that self-styled hard-core Catholics go into a fuss about Protestant or even Anglican sacraments. Validity, liceity, and such are not always significant for the news. Attending a Catholic school doesn’t always mean a person is in the club.
A bit of gossip:
While it is said that Markle was baptized to appease the Queen, Archbishop Welby believes she is authentic in her desire to be a Christian. In an interview with BBC Radio he said, “I am very, very sure after conversations that this is no tick-box exercise of ‘We ought to get married in church’ … There is a profound sense of commitment, of seriousness both about faith and about their lives together which is quite inspirational.”
I don’t have any reason to doubt the archbishop. I don’t follow celebrity news in any great detail. The royal fiancée seems to be a person of good character. I’m inclined to think the Church is better off for this liturgy. Some have fussed about how “private” this liturgy was, or that it should have been celebrated at Mass, or that an unbaptized person needs a year-long catechumenate, or that famous people are treated differently than the average schmo who shows up at the parish office and quotes the hymn, “Lord, I want to be a Christian.”
Ms Markle’s baptism is probably as public as one can get without the in-person spectacle.