Recently some well-intentioned women Catholics asked me for my opinion on baptism by total immersion practised in some of our modern churches during the Easter Vigil Mass.

I was lost for an answer as I had only witnessed one mass baptism by total immersion carried out in a church in the City District which sadly degenerated to a kind of child play in the makeshift inflatable tub of water towards the end of the ritual.

These women told me they were not supportive of this method of baptism. They claimed that when it was held in one church, the men were gawking at some women candidates who emerged from the pool wet, revealing their well- endowed feminine features. It was somewhat scandalising for them to see such a thing happening in church.

In future, perhaps these baptismal women candidates could be appropriately clothed in a thick black gown before they enter the pool so that they do not appear immodest when they emerge from the water.

They voiced another concern on women about to complete their period. In such a case, would they be allowed to partake in the immersion or would pouring water over the head be administered specially for them during the mass baptism ceremony?

These are, no doubt, relevant issues which deserve attention as well as a reply from the relevant church authorities.

    Nelson Quah

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