Having your child baptised
Baptism 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 the godparents promise help and support. The church also promises to welcome the child and to pray for the family. At Holy Nativity Baptisms take place within the main Sunday Service.
It is also a celebration, a time to come together with family and friends; remembering that your child is loved by God.
What is the difference between a Baptism and a Christening ?
There is no difference between a Baptism service and a Christening they are simply different words for the same thing.
Can anyone have a Baptism service in church?
Yes, so long as they have not been Baptised already. The Church of England welcomes all children and families for Baptisms - whatever shape that family takes. You do not have to be married to ask for a Baptism for your child. You do not have to have been a regular churchgoer - as parents, you do not even have to have been Baptised yourselves. Everyone is welcome at their local church.
What Happens at a Baptism Service?
Parents and godparents, family and friends will be asked by the priest to gather around the baptismal font. Godparents and parents will make promises on behalf of the child. The priest will ask the parents and godparents to make declarations on behalf of the child. The water in the font will be blessed and poured on the baby's head - this is the actual baptism of your child (the word 'baptism' means 'to be immersed in water'). The child will be signed on the forehead with the sign of the cross with a special holy oil. You will be given a candle as a reminder of the light of Christ which has come into your child's life.
What about Godparents?
Godparents are some of the most important people at the Baptism. They are people who will be there for your child and help them think about the bigger questions in life - questions of love, hope and faith.
Every child should have three godparents, two of the same sex and at least one of the opposite sex.
What do I do now?
Fill in our baptism form.
Baptism of Adults
You are never too old to be baptised. If you are an adult thinking about being baptised, we would be very happy to welcome you into our church. Choosing to be baptised as an adult is a major decision which is likely to involve a lot of soul-searching and significant re-orientation of life.
Whereas babies or young children have their parents and godparents acting on their behalf, once you are old enough to understand the Christian faith, you can make the promises for yourself.
As an adult you do not have godparents but you can chose one or more persons to be your sponsors. Their task is to assist you in your spiritual growth. They should be baptised and active participants in their own churches.
It is important to see baptism as a part of your journey in faith in Christ and not in isolation – a process of exploration as much as a destination. It is very usual nowadays for people to be baptised as adults. There is no upper age limit, and indeed the experiences of later life – redundancy, retirement, bereavement – often open up new possibilities of commitment to Christ.
The baptism of adults is often followed immediately by confirmation and communion. This will be explained when you have contacted us to make an appointment to meet with Fr. Steve.