Baptisms at St. Paul's
Baptism is a very special service which welcomes someone new into the church family. It is a time when a definite decision is made to try to follow Jesus, and marks the start of a journey where we continue to learn more about God's love for us, with the support of family, godparents and the church family too.
Some people don't feel able to affirm their faith with integrity and so may chose a thanksgiving service for their child instead. And some parents want to wait for their children to make the decision for themselves and they have a dedication service, with baptism following, when the child expresses a desire to be baptised (which may happen at any age).
What is the difference between baptism and christening?
None! It is just a different name for the same thing. Baptism covers all ages, whilst christening is generally just used for babies and children.
What do I do if I want to explore getting my child baptised?
Contact either Claire or the office (See 'Contact Us'). and they can let you know when there is a baptism at St. Paul's church for you to attend. We find this is really important at the start of the process as it means you have seen what happens during the baptism and the rest of the service and helps with all our later discussions.
At the service you can arrange a time with Claire to meet and discuss how to start the process.
How do I prepare for the baptism?
We help with the preparation! We do home visits to discuss the service and answer any questions you may have. We have a DVD for you to watch which explains about baptism really clearly and we give you some leaflets about baptism and choosing a godparent. But the best way to prepare is to come along to St. Paul's as often as you can so that you get to know us and we get to know you and you can learn alongside us about the Christian faith and how it is relevant to our everyday lives. We love questions at St. Paul's - so ask anything you want to know about!
How do I chose a godparent?
A godparent is going to stand and agree that they believe in Christian teachings and want to encourage the baby/child to grow up as part of the church family. They also promise to pray for them. So it is important that the people you chose can say these things with integrity. And because of this role, the Church of England requires that godparents are baptised, and preferably confirmed. Claire will discuss this more with you at the first visit.