Catholics are “born-again” in water and the Holy Spirit. The term “born-again” is a bit strange in Catholic colloquialism. Nevertheless, through Baptism we are spiritually born or “born-again.”
It is through Baptism that we become adopted children of God, hence the notion of being “born-again.” While Catholics believe one does not need to be aware of being “born-again” in order for it to still happen (as in the case of infant Baptism), Evangelical Protestants believe only a mature person who is able to reason and make adult decisions is able to be effectively “baptized.” Accepting Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Savior is the moment of rebirth, and the sacrament of Baptism merely ratifies that decision according to their tradition.
Infant Baptism whereby Catholics are “born-again” is followed by another sacrament called Confirmation, when Catholics can and must speak for themselves. As babies, parents and godparents spoke on their behalf. Confirmation, on the other hand, any time from second grade to high school (usually around eighth grade in many places), when young people are asked to confirm the faith they were given at baptism by consciously embracing it.
It is the sacrament by which the baptized are more perfectly bound to the Church and are enriched with a special strength of the Holy Spirit. In one sense, Confirmation is the time when Catholics are asked to accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Evangelicals believe they are saved in the blood of Christ and confirmed in the Holy Spirit at the same time, hence they do not have a separate sacrament of confirmation distinct from baptism, as do many other Christian denominations.
Catholics also believe they are saved through the blood of Christ and receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit in the sacrament of Baptism; however, Catholics receive them in a different sacrament. Western (Latin Rite) Catholics are baptized as infants and usually receive confirmation as an adolescent. Eastern (Byzantine) Catholics get both sacraments as an infant on the same day. In Baptism, Catholics are born-again in water and the Holy Spirit. In Confirmation, the gifts of the Holy Spirit are imparted to the previously baptized.
All Christians baptize by water to confer the saving effects of the blood of Christ that was shed on Good Friday. Water is the outward sign that signifies what is taking place spiritually. Spiritually, the soul is cleansed of original sin (inherited from our first parents, Adam and Eve), then infused with sanctifying grace. Sanctifying grace is the indwelling of the Holy Trinity. The effects of Baptism are phenomenal; we become adopted children of God, heirs to the heavenly kingdom, and members of Christ’s mystical body, the Church.
Eastern Orthodox and Byzantine Catholics receive all three sacraments of initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, and Holy Eucharist) at once. So a baby is baptized, is confirmed (called chrismated), and receives Holy Communion upon her baptismal day. This goes back to the ancient rite of early Christianity, when the early Church was receiving many adult converts.
After the Peace of Constantine, there was a mass conversion of adults, so all three sacraments were celebrated at once.