Getting Your Baby Baptised At St John's
The birth of a baby is a time of wonder and joy. We would be glad to help you celebrate this event. There are two ways of doing it.
Thanksgiving After Childbirth
This is a short service of prayer and thanksgiving after childbirth, which we can celebrate informally. You can contact one of the clergy or the Parish Office and it will be quickly arranged, often after a Sunday or weekday service.
The Church of England encourages parents to bring infants and young children to be baptised. This is a service which welcomes the child into the community of the church, prays for her/him, and at which parents and godparents declare their own faith and undertake to bring up the child within the church.
Where and when should the baptism take place?
Baptism is not a one-off event but the beginning of the life of faith. So it makes sense to arrange the baptism at the church where the family live or where they attend. In this way we can keep in touch afterwards and get to know and care about each child baptised in our church. So, if you have not already done so, you should come to worship at St John’s a few times to see if it is the kind of church where you feel at home. You can then talk to one of the clergy who will arrange to visit you to talk more about baptism.
Baptisms usually take place at the main Parish Communion at 9.30 am, so the congregation can share in the celebration.
What about Godparents?
Godparents make the declarations of faith on behalf of the child and undertake with the parents to bring the child up in the Christian faith. Therefore you should choose people who are not only family friends or relations, but who have a Christian faith of their own. There must be at least one woman and one man, although people often like to invite two of the same sex as the child and one of the opposite sex.
Membership of the church
You have to make your own decision about how you will encourage your child to grow in faith. We do what we can to support you. Families with children of all ages are welcome at all our services – either to stay in church with you, or to attend the crèche or Junior Church which both take place during the Parish Communion at 9.30am. There are regular all-age services and other events – details are on the church bulletin, on the website and in the parish magazine.
We hope that in due course your child will come to receive communion and be confirmed, thus joining in new ways in the worship and life of the church.