What is Christening?
During a Christening we thank God for his gift of life and publicly acknowledge his love. We acknowledge that we all need to make a new start with God. The water is an outward, visible sign of an inward acceptance of God in our lives to God and the new life that follows. A Christening is also the ceremony in which a person becomes a member of the church. We are happy to christen babies, children and adults.
Christenings are also known as baptisms
Can we have a Christening at Amberley?
Yes, if you live in the parish of Amberley.
If you live outside the parish then you then let the parish priest where you live know. You can find out where this is on the Church of England web-site.
When are Christenings held?
Christenings take place as part of our normal Sunday Holy Communion service which is held on the first and third Sundays of the month at 10:00am. We sometimes hold them when there is a fifth Sunday in the month during the Holy Communion service. If there are difficulties with timing then please discuss this with Rev’d. John Spiers, our priest
What happens at a Christening?
During the Christening the child’s parents and godparents, or the adult being baptised, declare their decision to turn to Christ, to repent of their sins and to renounce evil. They then affirm their belief and trust in God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.
Once the decision and affirmation have been made, the priest makes the sign of the cross on the forehead of the person being baptised and then baptises them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit by pouring water on their head.
At the end of the service the child or adult is given a lighted candle to remind them to shine like a light in the world to the glory of God the Father. We suggest that you light the candle on the anniversary of the Christening to remind you of the promises you have made.
Do we need to start coming to church?
Ideally we would like you to come to church before the Christening. If you are not a regular churchgoer then the ‘Second Sunday’ service would be a good place to start. This is held on the second Sunday of the month at 10:00am. It is designed to appeal to all ages. Alternatively we hold Messy Church twice a term. This involves craft for children followed by a simple act of worship.
Do we have to do Christening preparation?
Yes. We ask that you come to at least one church service before the Christening so that you can see what happens. One of our clergy will also need to see you before the Christening to explain in more detail what Christening means. If you are an adult wishing to be baptised we would normally ask you to do a more in-depth preparation, to learn more about the Christian faith as well as having a conversation about Confirmation which is the next stage on our journey as Christians.
Your journey of faith
We see a Christening as the first step of a person’s journey of faith. We would love to help you on this journey and suggest that you come to church regularly, perhaps starting with the monthly Second Sunday Service or our monthly Messy Church service for 3 to 11year olds. Children aged 3-11 are able to attend Sunday Club, our Junior Church, which is held during the morning service on the 1st, 3rd, 4th and 5th Sundays during term time.
For further information or to arrange a Christening, please contact the benefice office on 01453 889004 or Reverend John Spiers on 01453 873 176