A baptism is a very special occasion. Whether of an infant or an adult it marks a new start. Many are baptised as infants, brought by their parents, some bring themselves as adults. We welcome all enquiries. If you do not live within the parish, and do not have a significant link with the church, we may encourage you to speak to the church where you do live.
It is important to understand that we, as a church, never refuse to baptise anyone, but we will ask you to undertake some preparation and thinking about what baptism means. It is at the end of this preparation that you will be asked “Do you want baptism?” The answer and choice is then yours. This is because the church does not act as a gatekeeper for God’s grace, and baptism is an outward and visible sign of God’s inward and invisible grace.
After the birth or adoption of a child, parents might wish to recognise the gift of their child. Thanksgiving for the Gift of a Child recognises this desire without the promises that baptism involves. We are delighted if the church is invited to be part of your celebrations for the gift of a child.
Baptism is much more than just a naming ceremony: it is the rite of entry into the church. It is for those who believe in Jesus and wish to commit their lives to living to the best of their ability the way that he has shown us. To be baptised is not a decision to take lightly. When we are baptised we identify with and align ourselves with the mission and purpose of Jesus Christ.
In baptism water is used to symbolise the washing clean that God completes on the inside needed because of our inability to live God’s way and links us with the water that the first exodus needed to pass through, firstly to escape from slavery, and secondly to arrive at their promised land. We are involved in a new exodus from failed living towards the new creation of heaven on earth that Jesus leads us through.
- to be baptised is to publicly identify yourself with the mission and purpose of Jesus Christ
- baptism is an outward sign in our body of something that is going on inside our hearts
- baptism symbolises the cleansing that comes from the forgiveness of sins through Jesus Christ
- baptism is an active experience that we are to remember for the rest of our lives
The Bible records baptism of infants only as part of a family group where the whole family are coming to faith.
Many families request a christening after the birth of a child. Christening was the name given to baptism when virtually all infants were baptised shortly after birth on the basis of their birth in a country that was considered part of Christendom. If Christendom ever was, it certainly is not possible now in multi-faith Britain.
If you are wanting baptism then the first contact should be with the Vicar.
- If the baptism is for a child, a member of the church will visit and then the Vicar will come and explore what baptism is all about. If baptism is agreed as the way forward then it is at this point that a date can be agreed. At All Saints this will often be on the first Sunday of the month at 1pm Please do not make any arrangements until a date is agreed as particular dates cannot be guaranteed. We only agree to a maximum of two family groups at a baptism service, otherwise the worship area can get quite full.
- If the baptism is for an adult, there will be an expectation of involvement in the life of the church and for the baptism to be followed fairly shortly by the confirmation of the baptism by the Bishop. There will be some preparation for baptism and confirmation.