To our great delight, many couples who marry at St. John’s also have their children baptised here. About 30 baptisms are celebrated each year. Baptism Services take place on the 3rd Sunday of each month (except August and December) at 12 noon after the morning services.
Baptism is a crucial step in a child’s Christian life. Baptism is marked by two symbolic moments: the anointing of the child’s forehead with oil and the pouring of water over the child head. The anointing with oil signifies that the child receives, and is empowered by, the Holy Spirit to become the person God intends them to be. It also signifies that they are ‘incorporated’ into the Body of Christ, that is, they belong to God, and to other members of the Christian community, in a special way. The word christening captures this aspect of the Baptism service. The pouring of water signifies that the child is cleansed and given new life through symbolically sharing Jesus death and resurrection. With the help of parents, godparents, and the Christian community, it is hoped that the child will grow up to develop a personal faith in Christ. In the Church of England, this is celebrated in a service of Confirmation when the Bishop lays hands on and prays for the child to be filled with the Holy Spirit.
The Baptism service involves the parents and Godparents declaring their own Christian faith and making promises to turn to Christ and bring up the child as a Christian. We will help you,through Baptism Preparation, to understand the promises and recognise the true meaning of baptism to enable you to enter into the service in a meaningful way. Preparation evenings, held in the evenings at the Rectory, take place every 2 months and both parents are expected to attend these without their children present.
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