Infant blessing & dedication

We believe that children are a gift from God and are delighted to be able to offer a choice of ceremonies to anybody wishing to mark this occasion in church.  Often, parents bring their children as babies for a service of blessing and/or dedication, but we will gladly welcome children of any age.

We offer two different ceremonies for babies and children.  A blessing or a dedication.  Whilst these are slightly different, both are available to anybody who would like to thank God for their child(ren). Each service can be personalised to suit your family by choosing readings, songs, or inviting family members to share in the service.  The role of Godparents/Special friends are welcome but not compulsory.  Both ceremonies follow a similar format including prayers, a blessing, and the presentation of a certificate and Bible for the child.  The subtle but important differences between the two ceremonies are outlined below:

Blessing

The blessing ceremony in a simple act of Thanksgiving for the birth of a child.  It also serves as a naming ceremony and a chance for the wider family to come together in the church.  Prayers are said for the child, for the parents and the wider family, and God's blessing is conveyed on the child and the whole family. 

This is the preferred service for those who do not actively practice a Christian faith but who would still like a church service to celebrate the new addition to their family.

Dedication

The dedication ceremony includes all of the above, but there are some additional promises made by the parents and the church congregation.  The wider church and the family will covenant together to journey in faith and love as the child is raised within the church family.

This is the preferred service for those who are practicing Christians, who hope that as the child grows they will accept Jesus Christ as Lord for themselves.

Can my family have a service?

There is no set age or date for any of the services. Jesus was presented in the temple 40 days after His birth so some families aim to mirror that. Other families may plan for a year and hold it around a significant date. Sometimes the child will be older. Sometimes an older sibling and a newborn baby may both be blessed at the same time. Sometimes the parent's relationship may be blessed at the same time.

We do not discriminate based on family set-up when offering this service. Whether you are married to someone of another faith, cohabiting, in a same sex relationship, an adopted parent, a single parent or married to the child's other parent you are welcome to hold a service here for your child.

Where it is not possible for the child to be brought to the church (such as when the child is in hospital) we may be able to hold the service at another location.

Please contact the pastor for an informal chat if you would like any further information or to arrange a service of blessing or dedication for your child.


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