Planning a Christening

planning-a-christening

These days faith is not the only factor in arranging a christening. It can be a great way for family members to come together in communion to celebrate a momentous occasion for your child. This can also help you to secure a good church school spot when your child is much older!

planning-a-christening

Depending on which church you go to, expectations of service/mass attendance may vary. Some churches may require you to be there on a regular basis whilst others may be less stringent – Christmas and Easter would be the only times they see you. Be sure to check with your local church as to how frequent you need to attend church on a mandatory basis.

Everyone is always more than welcome to attend church more often than expected. It would be a great way to foster relationships with not only your fellow churchgoers but also the vicar and members of the clergy.

Bringing your child into the church early also helps to foster a sense of homeliness with the church and therefore the child would be more used to going to church and attending service/mass later in life.

Blessing or Christening?

A christening is essentially a call for your child to believe in the Lord Jesus and repent his/her sins. Considering that your child is still a baby, it is pretty obvious that most parents and some members of clergy would question as to the baby’s understanding of the christening and all that it entails.

Hence, you can opt for a blessing for his/her sound arrival into this world, without any promises made on the baby’s behalf. Your child would be more suited to a christening when they’re older and better able to understand baptism.

If you’re uncertain of which path to take, talk to friends who have had a traditional christening or those who have just had a blessing. You could also consult with your local church as to your options.

Booking a christening

When you have set your mind on a christening, talk to the vicar of your local church. You will have to find out if this event is by itself or a part of the main Sunday service.

Depending on which church you go to, some may just ask for your preferred dates for the ceremony and your chosen godparents’ names whilst others may want extra details in regards to the baptism itself, your faith and that of the godparents.

Selecting godparents

In Christian tradition, generally godparents were selected because they had strong Christian faith and are able to guide the child to grow in his/her faith. Though this is the preferred option by most churches, these days, most godparents are selected from family members or close friends.

For your child’s sake, please consider taking the time to choose a proper godparent. If you are picking a friend, think about what sort of role they may play in your child’s life. Would you still be friends with them years later?

Will they offer you and your child the support and guidance needed when needed? Think about it: would your child be best suited for a relaxed or strict guardian? How much faith and knowledge of faith does your godparent of choice need to have?

Though you are the parent of the child, the godparent plays an important role in bringing up the your child in a spiritual sense. So, do choose wisely as to whom you would like to be your child’s godparent(s). Also, more importantly, does your child like them?

In a traditional sense, most girls would have two godmothers and a godfather whereas boys would have two godfathers and a godmother. Then again, this amount is completely up to you.

Getting the christening gown

The gown that is usually worn by both girls and boys is coloured cream or white. It would be a lovely touch if you had one that was a generational heirloom but if you don’t, you can shop at antique/vintage clothing outlets or buy a brand new one.

The service itself

If the service itself is held especially for you, please remind guests to arrive no more than 10 minutes before the starting time. The christening held in your child’s honour might not be the only thing that’s being held that day and the vicar would need to keep track.

All guests will gather around the front, with the godparents and parents in front. A service sheet with bolded text will be usually be handed out to godparents so that they may know as to what they need to say during the event. The christening would take no more than 20-30 minutes.

Even though it may be summer, some churches can be quite chilly so be sure your baby is wrapped up warm and do consider bringing a set of spare clothes to change into in case of an emergency.

After the service

Depending on how you would like it, you could hold a small tea reception with nibbles and tea after the service. If your guests are from quite a distance away, do consider getting something a bit more filling for them.

Plan in advance so that things can be cooked ahead of time and just reheated on the day itself. You can also consider a catering service if you have extra money to spend.

Do invite the vicar for the after service tea as a way of thanking him!

Don’t forget to visit our baby gift shop before the christening!

Christening Poems

christening poems

Here a few lovely christening poems to consider for your christening service.

Christening Poems

May angels guide you

May angels guide you on your journey in life,
and sprinkle you with their love and light.
May you have the gifts of laughter and song,
and be filled with dreams that last all the days long.
May you live and care with kindness and grace,
and know within your soul, courage and faith.
You will be wrapped in the warmth
of your family and friends, and rays of
love will shine on you without end.

A darling angel

Your darling little angel
Was sent from Heaven above
As you celebrate his (her) christening
You’re surrounding him (her) with love

A small child

A small child
So precious and sweet,
Has come into your lives
To make them complete.
Today is so special
In every which way
Enjoy baby (name)’s
Special Christening Day

First came love

First came love
Then came marriage
Then came (name)
In a baby carriage
Now’s the time
To make it all complete
And to hold the Christening
Of this child so sweet

Celtic blessing

May the strength of the wind and the light of the sun,
The softness of the rain and the mystery of the moon
Reach you and fill you.
May beauty delight you and happiness uplift you,
May wonder fulfil you and love surround you.
May your step be steady and your arm be strong,
May your heart be peaceful and your word be true.
May you seek to learn, may you learn to live,
May you live to love, and may you love – always.

Welcome precious little child

Welcome, precious little child,
So fresh from God above,
Baptised today in Jesus’ name,
Held in His arms of love.
May angels guide your tiny feet
And bring you smiles to wear
And may our Heavenly Father
Always keep you in His care.

On this day

On this day of Baptism
May God, who loves us all,
Smile lovingly upon this child
So innocent and small
May He guide this darling girl
Throughout the years ahead
As blessings light the pathway
Where her tiny feet are led

Your tiny feet

May angels guide your tiny feet
And bring you smiles to wear
And may our heavenly Father
Always keep you in His care

Your Guardian angel

Wherever You Go
Whatever You Do
May Your Guardian Angel
Watch Over You

Our darling daughter

No earthly joys could bring
More pleasure
Than our beautiful girl
To love and to treasure
So may angels guide
Your tiny feet
Our darling daughter
So small and sweet

Footprints

“Walk a little slower Daddy” said a child so small
“I’m following in your footsteps and I don’t want to fall.

Sometimes your steps are very fast,
Sometimes they’re hard to see;
So walk a little slower Daddy,
For you are leading me.

Someday when I’m all grown up,
You’re what I want to be;
Then I will have a little child
Who’ll want to follow me.

And I would want to lead just right,
And know that I was true;
So walk a little slower Daddy,
For I must follow you.

A christening blessing

May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of his hand.

May God be with you and bless you;
May you see your children’s children.
May you be poor in misfortune,
Rich in blessings,
May you know nothing but happiness
From this day forward.

May the road rise to meet you
May the wind be always at your back
May the warm rays of sun fall upon your home
And may the hand of a friend always be near.

May green be the grass you walk on,
May blue be the skies above you,
May pure be the joys that surround you,
May true be the hearts that love you.

I hope you enjoy these christening poems and if you have any other suggestions please let me know.

Don’t forget to visit the Angel Gifts shop for a lovely christening gift.

11 Christening Day Facts

christening day facts

Over 10,000 christenings per month take place within Church of England churches. Around 7,000 of those a month are babies under a year old, and around 3,000 are aged between 1 and 12 years old.

All churches welcome christenings and are happy to baptise new youngsters.

Here 10 interesting facts about christenings

1. Is there a difference between a christening and a baptism?

The answer is no. There is no difference. Babies get ‘baptised’ during the ‘christening’. This is similar to couples getting ‘married’ at a ‘wedding’. The terminology can be confusing because people refer to baptisms gifts and christening gifts, and they sound like they may be different events.

The meaning of the word christening means becoming a Christian church member. Whilst baptism means to be immersed in water.

A baby or child is baptised with water when they are christened and become a member of the church.

2. What is the purpose of the baptism?

A baptism is said to signify the start of a child’s journey with God. This journey continues throughout their life and is a way of remembering that the child is loved by God and is a part of the church community. It also marks a celebration. It is a time when all the family and friends come together.

3. What happens during the christening service?

During the service, water will be blessed by the vicar and poured gently onto the baby’s head. The mark of the cross will be signed on their head. An oil may be used to do this and a special candle may be lit and given to one of the Godparents to hold.

The parents and Godparents make some promises on the baby’s behalf and prayers are said for the baby and family. The service will usually include some readings and some hymns.

christening-in-church

4. Does the christening give the baby’s name?

The official baby’s name is given by you when you register their birth. This name will be used during the baptism when the water is poured over the head.

5. Is anyone allowed a christening?

All babies, children and their families are welcomed by the church. It is not essential be married to have your child christened and you also do not have to be someone who goes to church often, nor have been christened yourself as parents.

Certain churches do insist that you live with the local area however, due to the popularity of christenings. If they christened babies and children from afar, there may not be space for the local children.

6. Are there any costs involved with a christening?

The christening service itself is completely free. However if you plan to have a party and food afterwards there will be costs. There can also be costs involved for any christening invitations you send, and of course a dress or outfit. It is possible to keep costs very low the more simple you make the occasion.

7. Where can I have my christening?

Usually a christening is carried out at your local church. If you want it to take place at a special church where you were married, or where you grew up, you would need to arrange to speak to the vicar there to assess availability. The chances are they will be happy to have you.

8. Is there an age limit to have a christening?

There is absolutely no age limit and you can have your baby or child christened at any time. After the age of seven however, the child will be expected to be able to make the promises to God themselves.

9. When can I have a christening?

Very often christening services take part within the main Sunday service of the church. Some churches do christenings at a separate time such as on the Sunday afternoon. The vicar will be able to advise of times.

10. What about the Godparents?

You can have as many Godparents are you like contrary to popular belief, and they don’t have to be married. It is traditional for boys to have two Godfathers and one Godmother, and for girls to have two Godmothers and one Godfather. The choice is entirely yours. Godparents do have to have been baptised themselves though.

The Godparents you choose should be people who you think will be there for your child, help them when they need it and be of an age to take part in the service.

11. How do I book a christening?

You will need to go along to your local church to see the vicar, give them a call or check out their website for how to arrange your day.

What To Wear To a Christening

A christening, like a wedding, is a happy event to be celebrated. But a lot of people don’t have a clue what to wear to a christening.

Although there is no official dress code, when going to a christening you would usually opt for a smart day time look, wearing light or bright colours. Black and dark clothes represent unhappy events.

A new baby has been born so it’s a celebration!

The time of year and weather will of course have a big impact on what you wear. In autumn and winter, women will be unlikely to be out in sandals and a mini skirt. It will more likely be trousers, coats and cardigans.

It is still possible to look cheery even though the sun may not be shining on the day with a few bright accessories.

Churches are also notoriously cold, so you will likely be keeping your coat on until the reception afterwards. If the day is during summer you will have your pick of a wide range of possibilities.

What to wear to a christening

what-to-wear-to-a-christening

For women aim to wear one of, or a mix of the following:

  • Feminine
  • Light
  • Bright
  • Floral
  • Avoid all black – it’s a celebration

For men aim to wear:

  • Smart but casual is acceptable, usually in trousers, a shirt and some shoes
  • Wearing a tie gives added bonus points but is in no way essential
  • Avoid jeans and trainers

Great places to look for ideas for a christening outfit are in these stores:

Next.co.uk – classic outfits for both young and older men and women

Debenhams.com – a wide range of clothes to suit every taste

Asos.com – always young and fresh, for those who like to wear the latest trends

Whatever you decide, don’t get too hung up on what to wear to a christening.

You just being there is what’s most important to the hosts, to help them celebrate the birth of their child. There is no doubt that any effort you put into what you wear will be much appreciated.

Remember to choose a traditional christening gift to take along with you. Something classic and charming such as a silver money box or a silver plated rattle is always a welcome keepsake.

What is a Christening?

What is a christening

What is a Christening?

What is a Christening?

We know that christenings are religious events that take part in a church. A christening is actually the same thing as a baptism.

Typically there is a church service held by the vicar, followed by the child being blessed over a font using some sacred water. Often christenings take place within the same main weekly Sunday service.

Parents and Godparents read out small sections of a service sheet together throughout the christening service.  Usually boys have two Godfathers and one Godmother, whilst girls have two Godmothers and one Godfather.

The christening service itself is usually short and lasts around 20 minutes. Afterwards there is usually a gathering of family and friends for food and drinks at a home or venue.

What is a christening?

The religious meaning of a christening

The original meaning of a christening is to erase the child’s original sin and for them to become a fully pledged child of God.

It also signifies the child officially becoming a part of the church and Christian faith. Chosen Godparents are said to have a duty in raising the child to believe in the church commandments, and also to guide them as they grow up.

The pouring of the water over the forehead at the font signifies the cleaning of sin, and is followed by the formal naming of the child.

Why do people have a Christening?

Some of the reasons are:

  • For faith and religious reasons
  • It is something nice to do for the child and is like a party in their honour
  • It is a great way of getting all of the family together and create memories

5 ways to make your child’s christening unforgettable

1. Hire a professional photographer

You can hire a photographer for any event, it doesn’t have to be a wedding. What could be more special than some utterly stunning photos of your baby and all of those who attended?

2. Choose an amazing cake

Choose a cake that really stands out and is the talk of the party! Imagine the anticipation all of your guests will have as they admire your amazing looking cake. Noone will forget how great that cake looked! And tasted! A good cake maker will let you sample their cakes for free before you buy. Don’t be afraid to ask for samples first, or phone up and ask if you can come in to collect some samples.

I have done this myself, and you would be amazed at how glad you will be if you shop around and taste how the quality of different cakes can vary. It’s also a fantastic treat to have lots of free cake to enjoy whilst you make your decision!

3. Hire some entertainment

Depending on your guests and the number of children attending you could hire a children’s entertainer or a magician to keep all the little ones happy during the party. It could even keep a few of the adults entertained too!

If the christening has mostly adults attending then a live musician such as a string quartet, harpist, singer, jazz band, pianist etc. will add a touch of class and instantly warm the atmosphere of the event. A sure way to make your child’s christening day unforgettable!

4. Have some beautiful balloons for decor

Contact a balloon decoration company and choose a lovely colour and design. Noone will forget how gorgeous the room looked, whatever the venue with some fabulous balloons on display!

5. Give all your guests a ‘party bag’ or little thank you gift

A sweet little gift for each guest who attended your child’s special day will be a precious momento for them to take home with them and enjoy after the day.