The baptism tradition is the ceremony or rite by which a person is admitted and becomes a member of a particular church and community. In Mexico, we live baptism as a rite but also as a community celebration with family and friends regardless the religion professed.
There is no official religion in México, but according to statistics 83% of Mexican population practices Catholicism as principal religion.
When a Baptism is celebrated in Mexico, a special party comes with it making the religious event something more like a social event with very specific characteristics:
Here are some of the most popular baptism traditions in Mexico:
The parents and the godparents
When parents ask to have their children baptized; they will choose a couple (a male and a female) to share with them the moral and religious education of the child. The relationship between the parents and the godparents of the child is a long file bond that initiates when the baptism ceremony takes place. Traditionally in Mexico and in most Latin American countries becoming COMPRADRES is the strongest bond between friends, as strong as natural sibling.
The candle and the white garment
The baptism candle is lightened as part of the events during the baptism rite. The child is enlightened by Christ and it is entrusted to the parents and godparents to keep this light burning. The white baptism garment is a symbol of the purity in the new baptized; the name for the white baptism garment in México is ROPON; for girls is it usually a very long embroidered handmade dress including a hat to cover the baby´s head before and after the water ceremony; for boys, it is an embroidered shirt in an assembly with pants with a long skirt on top to be used only during the ceremony; also with the hat. There is plenty on options to get exquisite embroidered handmade "ropon" -baptism garment- in Mexico. Here are some of our favorite models.
BOLO is the gift of money that the godfather throws to the community as a sign of the godson´s prosperity to come. This tradition has evolved and it's not as important as it used to be, especially in the urban areas.