What is baptism?
In baptism, you as parents are thanking God for this gift of life, deciding to start your child on the journey of faith and asking for the Church's support.
For your child, baptism marks the start of a journey of faith, which involves turning away from the darkness of self-centredness, turning towards Christ and becoming a member of the local and worldwide Christian family.
Baptism is a 'sacrament': a visible sign of God's love. In baptism, we are thanking God for his gift of life and publicly acknowledging his love. We are acknowledging that we all need to make a new start with God and work for good.
What happens in the Baptism service?
Your child's baptism may take place during the main Sunday service (10.45 am) or at a separate Baptism service (on the 1st and 3rd Sundays of the month usually at 12.30 pm). Your child will be joining the family of the Church and be welcomed into membership. In turn, the Church will promise to support and pray for you and your child.
The priest will make sure you know where to sit and when you need to move. Some parts of the service will be for the whole congregation to join in, some will be for you and the godparents.
For the baptism itself, parents and godparents will be asked by the priest to gather either at the front of the church or around the font. (The font is a large basin on a pedestal in the shape of an angel, containing the water for baptism.)
The priest will ask the parents and godparents to make declarations on behalf of the child (see the section 'Making decisions and promises').
What happens after the baptism?
Baptism marks a new start for your child, as a member of the worldwide Christian community. In turn, the Church welcomes you and your child and promises to support you in bringing the child up in the faith. We have services where children are welcome and special groups and activities. There is a toddler group during the week.
The Christian community will promise to support you and to pray for you and your child.