Adopt A Pagan Baby - 1959
Back in the 1950s and early-1960s, and possibly before that, the Catholic schools sponsored an ongoing drive to raise money for missions in foreign lands. It was called Adopt-A-Pagan-Baby.
At every Catholic school in those days were collections to save unbaptized children not taught about God (Pagan Babies). Pictures of Cherub-faced Indian, African, and Asian babies graced small cardboard collection boxes given to each child. Students gave their allowances to save those babies.
The price of adoption was five dollars, and kids were allowed to give their baby a Christian name. Many students adopted several babies. In return they were given a decorative certificate commemorating their adoption pledge. Their adopted Pagan Babies were then given the Sacrament of Baptism. Many of those kids still have their adoption certificate, like Bob Daley, who adopted "Michael" on February 24, 1959.
Saving Pagan Babies occurred during a simpler time, before cynicism and political correctness found their stride. Someone must have decided it was no longer a good way to raise money for Catholic missions. The concept, however, rings true today. It seems hard to believe, but according to the National Catholic Register, more than one-third of millennials now say they are unaffiliated with any faith.
Christians have always believed that “baptism is the gateway to life in the Spirit, and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as sons of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission…” (CCC 1213)
Other Brookliners Remember Adopting Their Pagan Babies:
"Lord have mercy! I had one certificate for
a Pagan Baby but lost touch. That bring back memories!" - Vera Marie C.
Some Other Local Pagan Baby Adoptions
From Saint Norberts Elementary
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