Baptism for babies and children takes place in a service often called a Christening. In this service parents thank God for his gift of life, make a decision to start their child on a journey of faith and godparents promise help and support. The church family also promises to welcome the child and to pray for the family.
For your child, being baptized at a Christening marks the start of a lifelong journey of faith as part of the local and worldwide Christian family.
What happens during the Baptism/Christening service?
A Christening might take place during a normal Sunday service or at a separate time.
All of you will be made welcome, and the regular congregation will make promises to support and pray for your child, you and your godparents.
At the Baptism itself, the vicar will ask the parents and godparents to bring the child to the front of the church or to gather round the font.
Before your baby/child is baptized, the vicar will ask you (parents and godparents) to declare that you intend to do your best in your role as a parent or godparent. The vicar asks you to say that you are ‘prepared to walk with the child in the way of Christ’ and will help them take their place in the church.
The vicar leading the service will make sure it all goes smoothly and that everyone knows what to do and when to do it. Ask if there will be a rehearsal or other preparation you could get involved with.
Some parents might want to celebrate the gift of a child in a different way without the commitment that baptism involves. During the Thanksgiving service parents and families give thanks for the birth or adoption of a child and everyone prays for family life. It can take place in church with the congregation, or with just family and friends gathered, or elsewhere such as home, or even in hospital.
A Thanksgiving Service is not a Baptism. There are no promises to make about the Christian faith. The child will be blessed and prayed for, and supporting friends will promise to support the parents in bringing up their baby.
If you would like to book a date for Baptism, want more information about having your baby or child baptised, or to arrange a Thanksgiving service, please fill in your details below.