In an article at Church Militant, she expresses the view that the baptism of desire is never implicit. It is only ever explicit, and it has certain set conditions that must be met, making the baptism of desire, in her view, very narrow.
“The Download—What the Hell?”
by Christine Niles
February 10, 2016
The Church teaches three types of baptism:
1. the formal Sacrament of baptism with water
2. baptism of desire
3. baptism of blood
In her article, she only mentions baptism of water and of desire, not blood.
Nile: “For those for whom the normal means of baptism by water are impossible, the Church in Her mercy offers the baptism of desire — but the baptism of desire must be an explicit desire for baptism unfulfilled because of circumstances that make baptism by water impossible.”
That is simply a false and heretical assertion. The Church does not teach that baptism of desire must be explicit. Nor does the Church limit the baptism of desire to only those circumstances where a baptism by water would be impossible.
Niles quotes the Baltimore Catechism to support her claim, but the Catechism of Pope Saint Pius X teaches the following:
“17 Q. Can the absence of Baptism be supplied in any other way?
“A. The absence of Baptism can be supplied by martyrdom, which is called Baptism of Blood, or by an act of perfect love of God, or of contrition, along with the desire, at least implicit, of Baptism, and this is called Baptism of Desire.”
Notice that the desire of baptism can be “implicit”. This proves the statement by Niles false. In addition, St. Thomas Aquinas and Saint Alphonsus Liguori both taught that baptism of desire may be implicit. Pope Pius IX also taught on the implicit baptism of desire in Quanto Conficiamur Moerore and Singulari Quadam. Pope Pius XII taught the same in On the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ. And so did the Holy Office in rebuking Fr. Feeney.
The teaching of the Church on the implicit baptism of desire is infallible under the ordinary and universal Magisterium. Thus, the rejection of implicit baptism of desire by Christine Niles is heresy. Her teaching is essentially a modified version of Feeneyism.