THANKSGIVING & BAPTISM
The birth or adoption of a child is a cause for great celebration. Many people are overcome by a sense of awe at the creation of new life and want to express their thanks to God. We provide an opportunity for parents, families and friends to give thanks for the birth or adoption of a child and to pray for their family life. It can be a private celebration in church or it can take place within a main Sunday service.
A Service of Thanksgiving is different from baptism (sometimes called christening), which is about becoming a member of the Church, the Body of Christ.
Here in St Clement, baptisms normally take place during the main Sunday service. Here is what happens:
- we say sorry and are assured of forgiveness by God through Jesus dying for us on the cross
- we declare together the Christian faith in the Trinity: God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit
- as the Church, the parents and godparents, we promise to bring the child up to understand the Christian faith, live it out in our lives and bring the child to worship
- we baptise the child with water which is a symbol of forgiveness and spiritual life
- we give the child a candle as a symbol of the light of Christ coming into the world and sending us out as lights
- we give the child a Bible
When the baptism takes place at some other time, we will invite you to a service where we can welcome your child into the church and present them with a Bible.
If you are thinking about baptism for yourself or for your child / children, you can download an order of service to help you understand in more detail what it involves:
Whenever baptism happens, whether as a baby, child or adult, it lies at the heart of a journey of faith as a follower of Jesus Christ. You are never too old to take this step and being baptized as an adult is a wonderful experience.
If you were baptized when you were a child or in a different Christian tradition, we are happy to talk to you about the ways in which you can renew the promises that were made then as you discover more about what it means to live them out in your life.