IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER
AND THE SON
AND THE HOLY SPIRIT
Thanksgiving and Baptism of Babies and Children
We are delighted that you are thinking about a special service for your child. St Barnabas offers two services that you might want to consider.
A SERVICE OF THANKSGIVING can be arranged at fairly short notice and can be a stop on the way to Baptism (Christening). It involves special prayers for your child and family and the dedication of them to God. It does not involve parents of Godparents making promises (see later!). Reasons for choosing this option include:
1. Parents want to mark and celebrate in church their child's arrival but don't feel ready yet to make the promises and commitment involved with a baptism service.
2. Parents would prefer that their child make up their own mind about baptism when they are older and can make the promises for themselves
3. One parent of Godparent is not at this time able to make the decision about whether baptism is right or not, or is unable to make the desired date.
A SERVICE OF BAPTISM (also known as a Christening) is a much bigger step. Preparation is involved and by baptising your child, parents and godparents are making promises and declarations about believing in Jesus. By choosing baptism for your child, you are committing to starting a new journey to explore the Christian faith in your day-to-day life. We are here to support you and your children as you do that. Baptism is all about entering and becoming part of the community of faith. We love welcoming new people to the family!
We are happy to chat to you as you consider the best way forward for you children and family and look forward to hearing from you soon!
Whenever it happens, whether for a baby, child or adult, baptism is at the heart of an amazing journey of faith as a follower of Jesus Christ. You are never too old to take this step; being baptised as an adult is a wonderful experience.
You may have been baptised at a christening when you were a child or in a different Christian tradition, and there are always special ways to renew the promises that were made then in a fresh way as you discover more about what it means to live them out in your life.
If you want to know more about the Christian faith, or are ready to be baptised then contact the page! You may be asked to go along to a few sessions to explore more about what it means to be a Christian, usually joining others who are exploring faith as well. Then, there will be a special service where you will be baptised. In the Church of England, this may involve water being poured on your head at the font, or the church may have a special pool and you will be fully immerse in the water. However it happens, it's a great occasion, full of joy!
A confirmation is a service where a person who has already been baptised confirms the promises that were made when they were baptised. If a person was baptised as a child, these promises were said by parents or Godparents and it is a chance to make the decision for themselves. The service sometimes takes place with others who are ready to make that promise and you will have some sessions with the vicar beforehand to prepare you. If you are thinking about whether confirmation may be right for you, get in touch with Rev Sarah, who will be happy to chat to you about it.
- Celebrate the birth of your child with prayers and a dedication to God
- No promises made in following the Christian life. Your child could choose to be baptised when they are older.
- A commitment to start a new journey with Christ and to explore the Christian faith in your day-to-day life
- Declarations are made about believing in Jesus.