Christening or Baptism

Christening and Baptism are two words for the same thing! Many vicars prefer to use the term ‘Baptism’ because the service is not technically a naming ceremony – the children and babies have already been named! Also the word ‘baptism’ means ‘to immerse’ and although we don’t immerse people in water we do immerse them in God’s love.

Like all Church of England Parishes, St Oswald’s and St Lawrence’s offer Christening (or baptism) to babies, children and adults. When a baby or child is being baptised the his/her parents and godparents to speak for them, on their behalf. It is later, when those who were baptised as infants come to be confirmed, that they themselves make statements of faith and Christian belief.

In the baptism service we use the phrase’born again’ because the baptised are being born into God’s church, they become adopted children of God and receive God’s Holy Spirit. Baptism in one sense makes a person a Christian because it is a sign and a seal of God’s grace (what God has done, is doing and will do). However, baptism isn’t the end of a person’s journey of faith and growth in faith, it is the beginning.

The parents and godparents of a baby or child make the promise to bring the children up as Christians, to bring them to church to help them grow in faith and to teach them how to live as Christians. These are significant and important promises and at both churches we try our best to help parents and god parents fulfill their promises through family services. We are also blessed at St Oswald’s in that we have a very good church primary school (Lower Peover) which gives children a foundation for growing as Christians.

If you would like to organise a baptism please download and complete a Baptism form, then arrange to meet with the Vicar to discuss things further.