If you are thinking about baptism, the first thing to do is to come to a church service and meet us. There are details here of all the services. Most baptisms now take place on Sunday afternoons. You can come and see a baptism taking place and see what is involved. To find out when the next baptism is taking place contact the church office.
What is Baptism [Christening]?
In the sacrament of Baptism, you as parents are both thanking God for his gift of life, while making a decision to start your child on the journey of faith, a journey which continues for the rest of their lives.
Baptism is the first step in becoming a member of the local and worldwide Christian family.
The declarations made by you and the child's godparents will be made in front of the church congregation; your friends and family as well as God.
You will be asked to answer, on your child's behalf, that you have decided to turn away from everything which is sinful and instead to turn towards Christ.
This involves far more than the actual service itself. If we are to genuinely agree to the promises to pray for our children and to raise them as Christians, then this involves a serious commitment from both parents and godparents.
What's the difference between a Baptism and a Christening?
None, they are just different words for the same thing.
I'm not a regular churchgoer. Can I still have my child baptised?
Before making such important public promises, you may also wish to find out more about the Christian faith and what joining the church involves before you make a decision about baptism.
Many people find it wise to attend two or three church services. This is especially helpful if one of the services is a baptism service which will give you an idea of what the service would involve.
You may wish to ask about having a service of Thanksgiving for the gift of a child. In this service, you thank God for the gift of your child and the child is blessed. However, you do not make the same promises as in the Baptism Service.
If you choose to have a Thanksgiving Service, you may also have a Baptism service for your child at a later date.
Can I just phone up and fix a convenient date?
No. It is important that we talk through and answer all your questions with regard to baptism first. Different people have different issues which they may wish to talk through; we hold regular Baptism Preparation evenings throughout the year and you will have to attend one of these. They are all held on Wednesday evenings at the Vicarage for dates please speak to the Church Office.
What is the role of Godparents?
Godparents make the same promises on behalf of the child being baptised as parents. Godparents promise to pray and support the child and to help the parents to bring up the child in the Christian faith. It is an important and responsible role.
Godparents can be family members or friends. However, it is important that you choose people who will take an interest in your child's spiritual welfare and who will pray for you and your child. Godparents must themselves be Baptised.
When does the Baptism take place?
Most baptisms now take place on Sunday afternoons.
What is the right age for Baptism?
Baptism can happen at any age. Teenagers and adults may also be baptised. You can only be baptised once, but there are ways of renewing your Christian commitment publicly as an adult. If you wish to do this then please contact the office, and Kevin will be in touch with you to advise you.
What does it cost?
A Baptism service is free, although there will be a collection at the end of the service, your guests should be told this, and a small Diocesan charge of £12 for the baptism certificate.
So how do I proceed?
If you are interested in having a service of Baptism or Thanksgiving, the first step is to come to church. After that, contact the church office where you will be asked for your details. You will then be invited to join one of the preparation evenings.
Baptism Preparation dates
There are Baptism preparation evenings for those wishing to discuss baptism. All are on Wednesday evenings at the Vicarage and start at 19.30. Please speak to the church office if you would like to attend one of these evenings.
Baptism is not the end of a journey; it is only the first step. If you are to raise your child as a Christian, then it will involve a spiritual journey for the whole family.
For those who remember church from when they were children as being a place of being forced to sit still and be quiet for an hour every Sunday, then they will be pleasantly surprised.
Depending on the age of the children, we have different groups for them to attend during the service where they both have fun, as well as learn more about what it is to be a Christian.