Baptism, Conditional

Baptism, Conditional
   As Holy Baptism can take place only once in any individual life, the Church has always been most careful that it should not be repeated. But it sometimes happens that grave doubts arise as to the validity of one's Baptism, or the fact of Baptism is only a matter of conjecture. In such cases the Church has provided for conditional, or hypothetical Baptism. The form is, "If thou art not already baptized, (name) I baptize thee in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, Amen." In such a case if the Baptism has already taken place and was valid, the hypothetical Baptism passes for naught, but if it were not valid or had not taken place, the hypothetical Baptism is effective.

American Church Dictionary and Cyclopedia. — New York, Thomas Whittaker. . 1901.

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