Baptism and Thanksgiving -

Babies change lives! They can bring great joy and a fair bit of tiredness. The birth of a new child is always to be celebrated.  With this precious life in your arms, it is also a good time to think through big questions of life, death, heaven and hell.

We would like to help you to thank God for your child and give you the opportunity to think about these big questions.

There are two ways you can do that.

1. Thanksgiving Service
The first is a thanksgiving service. In this service we thank God for the gift of the child, celebrate the name you have given the child and pray for you and the child as you begin this next stage of life together

2. Baptism
Baptism is a much more serious undertaking. As well as thanking God for your child, you are making some wonderful and very big promises on their behalf. It is therefore very important that you yourself are committed to following Jesus, are willing publicly to declare your own faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour and are committed to bringing your child to church every week.

We'd be delighted to help you think through big matters of faith and talk about what is most appropriate for you and your family.

If you are interested in baptism, we will invite you to join us regularly on a Sunday and also ask you to commit to some sessions exploring what Christian faith is all about.

What next?
- First bring your family along to one of our Sunday services (10:30 am) and introduce yourself to the minister;
- then get in contact with us through this form:

Please be aware we won’t be able to confirm a date for the baptism/ thanksgiving until we have met you.

More information:

Some common questions about baptism:

1. Does Baptism mean my child will go to heaven? 
Baptism is not a ticket to heaven. The Bible says that trusting Jesus is the only way to eternal life.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son [that's Jesus] so that whoever believes in him may not die but have eternal life. 
That's in John's gospel, chapter 3, verse 16.

Jesus also says
I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father, except through me
That's in John's gospel, chapter 14, verse 7.

Jesus is God's gift to you. With Jesus you get a relationship with God now and an eternity in his presence.
Which means if you are baptised and not trusting in Jesus you have big problems. You need to turn to Jesus before you meet him. Click here for more info.
It also means that you can be trusting in Jesus and not baptised.
However, if you are trusting in Jesus you ought to get baptised because it is a sign of what God has done for you in Jesus. Speak to the vicar or come to a sign in session to talk some more.

2. If my child is not baptised doesn't that mean they can't get married in church?
There is no legal requirement that you are baptised before marrying in church. In fact you don't even need to believe in God to get married in church, though of course it helps! 

3. What are the implications of baptism for funerals?
Again, the only requirement to be buried in a church yard is that you are either a parishioner, live in the parish, die in the parish or are on the electoral roll of the parish. And of course there needs to be space in the church yard. Many are now full up. Whether you are baptised or not affects only what words may be used in the funeral service.
Nick Gowers, 12/10/2013