Infants who suffer as they die may be likened to the suffering Christ and when they die by violence, they may be said to be baptized by their blood.
“Baptism for salvation can be received either
in re or
in voto,” meaning that a desire by an adult to be baptized in efficacious. When the sacrament of baptism is conferred on a child, “the Church professes her faith and intercedes powerfully for the infant, supplying the act of faith that the infant is unable to make.” By the same token, if “an unbaptised infant is incapable of a
votum baptismi, then by the same bonds of communion the Church might be able to intercede for the infant and express a
votum baptismi [baptism by desire] on his or her behalf that is effective before God” (no. 98).
I believe I will meet my son Joshua one day, and all the other babies whose parents I have been so very blessed to meet through this work. As we are embraced by the love and mercy of God, I believe we will learn how crucial the prayers and intercession of our children have been to uniting souls to God, a God who brings good out of all things, even the most terrible sins, if we allow Him to, God
– whose desire is to reconcile us to Himself – will allow us to embrace our children and to live together for eternity praising Him for His mercy.