Six-week-old baby dies in baptism at Romanian church after going into cardiac arrest

WARNING: This story accommodates distressing content material.

Romania’s Orthodox Church is underneath strain to vary its baptism ritual after a baby boy died following a ceremony in which he was immersed thrice in water.

Greater than 59,000 individuals have signed a petition urging the Romanian Orthodox Church to vary the baptism ritual.

“Given the tragic conditions in which infants died after immersion in the water in the baptismal font, the church should urgently regulate this apply!” the petition reads.

The six-week-old baby went into cardio-respiratory arrest on Sunday, after being immersed in a baptismal font thrice throughout his baptism at a church in Suceava, north-eastern Romania, CNN affiliate Antena 3 reported.

“The boy was crying, however the priest immersed him thrice in water and he inhaled water,” the kid’s distraught father instructed native media.

The baby was resuscitated by paramedics in the church and was transported to the Intensive Care Unit at Suceava County Hospital, however died after a number of hours, Antena 3 mentioned.

(File image) A Romanian Orthodox Church baptism involves the child being immersed in holy water three times by a priest
(File picture) A Romanian Orthodox Church baptism entails the kid being immersed in holy water thrice by a priest Credit score: Getty/AFP

Murder investigation launched

Police have opened a culpable murder investigation, based on Antena 3.

“It’s, indisputably, a tragic case, a case that should be investigated. Let’s not think about {that a} youngster might be put in water with out overlaying his nostril, mouth and ears,” Vasile Bănescu, spokesman for the Romanian Patriarchate, instructed Antena 3 Monday.

“There’s a method that an skilled priest all the time makes use of. That is how a baptism is well known with the utmost care “, Bănescu added.

Vladimir Dumitru, who began the net petition, instructed CNN that he didn’t need to abolish the ritual of Orthodox baptism “however to vary that typically brutal apply that entails the chance of drowning, particularly in the case of kids with well being issues.”

“The petition isn’t directed in opposition to the establishment of the Church or in opposition to the clergymen however has a constructive intention,” he instructed CNN.

“By means of this petition we would like the apply of baptism to be symbolic by sprinkling the baby on the highest of the top and never its full immersion thrice, and this non-invasive apply to change into necessary in all Orthodox Church buildings in Romania and in the Diaspora,” he mentioned in an e-mail.

CNN has contacted the Romanian Orthodox Church and Suceava Police for remark.