We are glad to be able to offer Baptism services at St Mary's for parents who are celebrating the arrival of a baby into their family! The service of Baptism is when the baby is sprinkled with water at the font. Parents make statements about their faith in Jesus Christ, and make promises about giving their child a Christian upbringing at home and in church. The baptism - or christening as it is sometimes called - marks the beginning of the Christian journey for a baby, and they are welcomed into the Christian faith, which we hope they will come to experience for themselves as they grow up.
Top 10 facts about Christenings
The Church of England carries out more than 10,000 christenings per month each year for babies and infants.
Here is a list of the most frequently asked questions about getting your baby or child christened.
1. What is the difference between a baptism and a christening?
There is no difference between a christening service and a baptism service.
2. What is baptism?
“Baptism marks the beginning of a journey with God which continues for the rest of our lives, the first step in response to God’s love.”
3. What happens in the service?
Christenings are services replete with symbols for new life. At your baby’s christening water will be blessed and used to pour on the baby’s head. The baby will be signed with the cross, a special oil may be used for this, and a candle may be given. Godparents and parents will make promises on behalf of the baby, and prayers will be offered for the baby and the family. There may also be readings and hymns, which you may be able to choose.
4. Does a christening give my baby a name?
No. Your baby’s name is given when you register the birth.
5. Who is allowed to have a christening service?
The Church of England welcomes all babies, children and families – whatever shape that family takes.
6. How much does a christening service cost?
The good news is that a christening service is free.
7. Where can I hold the christening?
You can have your baby christened at your local parish church. If you want to have the christening at a different church, for example, where you grew up or where you were married, you will need to talk to the vicar at that church.
8. When can I have a christening?
You can have your baby or child christened at any age.
9. What about godparents?
The involvement of godparents can be one of the most joyful parts of the christening. Godparents must be baptised themselves and old enough to make some serious promises on behalf of the child.
10. How do I arrange a christening
To arrange a christening, please ring Revd Zoe Burton (01623 793758) or email: [email protected]