The birth or adoption of a child is a cause for celebration. Many people are overcome by a sense of awe at the creation of new life and want to express their thanks to God. At your local Parish Church we would like to join in your celebrations by offering you a choice of services for your child.
This page is designed to help explain what is on offer to you.
The first option is to ask for a blessing of your child. This is very simple and just involves the priest coming to your home and praying for God’s Blessing to be on you and your child.
The second option is for you to bring your child to Church for a Service of Thanksgiving. The Service of Thanksgiving provides an opportunity for parents and families to give thanks for the birth or adoption of a child and to pray for family life within the context of God’s love. Thanksgiving Services usually take place on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon.
The Service of Thanksgiving for the birth of a child is a short service, which focuses on expressing the feelings of gratitude associated with the birth of a child. Your child is named and blessed and given a present of a Gospel. You are encouraged to have sponsors to help and support you and your child as you care for and bring the child up. The sponsors may or may not become godparents if your child is baptised later. The Thanksgiving Service is a good opportunity to celebrate in church the arrival of your child within a home/family context. This service is not the same as a Baptism (sometimes called a Christening).
Baptism or Christening
Baptism is the sacrament of initiation into membership of the church, the Body of Christ. It is a once for life commitment. Baptisms are held as part of the main Sunday Worship service showing their importance to the church community and also as a separate service typically on a Sunday morning or afternoon.
As Baptism is the rite of entry into the Christian church, your child will receive a welcome from the whole church.
During the service the Parents and Godparents will make declarations about their faith and promises about bringing the child up in the Christian faith.
The child will be baptised with water and welcomed into their new church family.