In baptism, we thank God for his gift of life and publicly acknowledge his love. In the Anglican Church it is common to baptise young children; this is sometimes known, outside the church, as Christening.
Baptism is a 'sacrament' (outward sign to symbolise grace) in the Christian tradition that is traced back to Jesus himself being baptized in the river Jordan.
Baptism marks the moment in which someone begins their life-long journey as a member of the church. Adults make their own commitment and promises but, for children, those promises are made on their behalf by parents and godparents.
Because baptism indicates a desire to bring children up in the Christian Faith, it is important that there is a connection with that church community where the faith is formed and nurtured. This is because baptism is not supposed to be an isolated event, but part of a journey of faith in which worshipping in the church will be an important ingredient now and in the future.
Baptism marks the beginning of a journey with God which continues for the rest of our lives. Baptism is for those who want to publicly state their desire to bring up their child as a Christian. It therefore involves promises of commitment to Jesus and the Church. As well as the words of commitment, the child is named, water is poured over the child and prayers are said.
As it is impossible for small children to live their lives in a Christian way without the help and support of their parents, the decision to have a child baptised should signify that the family is prepared to live out the promises made in Baptism in a committed and whole-hearted way.
If you want to ask about arranging a Christening (Baptism), please contact Rev'd Chris here.
If you want to read more from the Church of England about these and other special church services, please click here.