People have different reasons for wanting a service for their child, whether it is to celebrate the birth, publicly give thanks to God, or introduce the child to the life and worship of the Christian church. There are two types of service and either might be appropriate. It all depends on what you want to express and to commit yourselves to.
The thanksgiving service gives you an opportunity to express thanks to God for the gift of your child, to ask for his blessing and to pray for his help as parents. You will be presented with a book of Bible stories and a certificate to mark the occasion.
You can ask people to act as sponsors; this is a similar role to that of godparent. Thanksgiving is different from a baptism in that no water is used and the parents may or may not wish to commit themselves explicitly to Jesus Christ and to participating in the life and worship of the church. Thanksgiving could be a good option if you’re uncertain about making the baptism promises. It may be followed by baptism at a later date when you have seen more of the church’s life and been able to give the baptism promises more thought.
The baptism service is for those who want to make a more specific Christian commitment in the upbringing of their children. In the service, parents and godparents make a public declaration of their Christian faith. They also promise, among other things, to help their child `to take their place within the life and worship of Christ’s church’. In other words, parents promise to come to church regularly, and bring their child with them so that they are leading the way for their child to have an active participation in church family life. The baptism itself symbolises the new start that God gives to those who join the community of Christ’s followers, his church.
The Church of England has churches all over England, and each has its own parish. This is a bit like the catchment area of a school or doctor’s surgery.
As a parish church in the Church of England we offer Baptisms to those who live in our parish or to members of our church.
If you don’t live in Knowle’s parish and don’t regularly come to Sunday services, we are able to offer a Thanksgiving service.
To find contact details for your local parish church, go to the Church of England website.
Arranging a Baptism or Thanksgiving in Knowle
If you are interested in a service for your child please Call the Parish Office: 01564 779123 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org who will take your details and give you more information. A member for the Baptism and Thanksgivings team will then visit you to discuss in more detail which type of service is right for your child.
Baptisms or Thanksgivings usually happen on the third Sunday of the month. Thanksgivings at 2pm and Baptisms at 3pm. Up to four families take part in each service. The services last about 30 minutes each.
Following a baptism families are invited to a Baptism Welcome at our 9.15 service where the newly baptised are welcomed into the church family.
Baptism and Thanksgiving preparation are part of Connect, which includes a range of groups for Parents, Carers and children under 5. More about Connect, or see our Facebook page www.facebook.com/knowleconnect.