Baptism

WHAT MUST I DO IN ORDER TO HAVE A CHILD BAPTISED?

  • Complete the Application Form and return it to the Parish Office at least 8 weeks prior to the date of the Baptism. The Ven Mandy Herriman will then contact you to make the necessary arrangements.

WHAT IS BAPTISM?

  • Baptism is the Sacrament of the Church which welcomes new members into God’s Church.
  • Baptism brings us to God in repentance to receive forgiveness of our sins.
  • Baptism is the mark of belonging to the Christian faith.
  • By Baptism we become the adopted sons and daughters of God.
  • Baptism is the Sacrament by which we receive new life in the Holy Spirit.

WHY ARE BABIES BAPTISED?

  • Children of Christians are baptized because:
  • God welcomes children into the Church (the Body of Christ) on the basis of their parents’ faith and their obedience to his commandments.
  • Jesus welcomed and blessed the little children. (Mark 10: 13–16)
  • Our salvation depends entirely on what God has done for us, not on our own merit.

WHAT ARE THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE PARENTS?

  • At least one parent should be a baptized member of God’s family.
  • Parents are strongly encouraged to be members of the Parish Church by attending Sunday worship services for at least 3 months prior to the Baptism in order to uphold the integrity of the Sacrament by sharing in the Body of Christ.
  • Parents must attend Baptism preparation classes, prior to their child’s Baptism, on dates set by the Parish.
  • In the service of Baptism, parents are asked to renew their own commitment to Christ, and make the baptismal promises on behalf of their children. The baptismal promises are:
    • Do you turn to Christ? I turn to Christ
    • Do you repent of your sins? I repent of my sins
    • Do you reject selfish living and all that is false and unjust? I reject them all
    • Do you renounce Satan and all evil? I renounce all that is evil
    • Will you each, by God’s grace, strive to live as a disciple of Christ, loving God with your whole heart, and your neighbour as yourself, until your life’s end? I will, with God’s help
    • Sometimes parents are not ready to take on the promises of baptism for their child. Some would prefer to allow the child to choose to be baptised as an adult. In such cases, we are able to conduct a service of ‘Thanksgiving for a Child’ which publicly celebrates the birth of the child, but does not require the baptismal promises.

WHAT ARE THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE GODPARENTS / SPONSORS?

  • Godparents must themselves be baptized members of God’s family (any denomination), but it is preferable that at least one be Anglican.
  • Godparents or sponsors must attend Baptism preparation classes, prior to the child’s Baptism, together with the child’s parents.
  • Godparents or sponsors are expected to support those who are baptized by praying for them, sharing their faith and by the example of their own Christian lives.

 

ADULT BAPTISMS

  • We welcome adults who have not yet been baptized, to receive this Sacrament.
  • Adult candidates usually have ‘sponsors’ as opposed to ‘godparents’ but their role remains the same.
  • Adult candidates receive the sacrament of Confirmation during the same service.
  • Please contact the Parish Office for more details regarding preparation for these Sacraments.

WHEN DO BAPTISMS TAKE PLACE?

  • Baptisms take place during a normal Sunday service, on dates that are set in the Parish calendar. These dates are available from the Parish Office.
  • Except in the case of an emergency, Baptisms may not take place outside the Church.
  • ‘Private’ Baptisms are not permitted since Baptism is not a ‘private occasion’, but a public confession of a family’s faith and the acceptance of a child or adult into the Christian community.

WHAT COSTS ARE INVOLVED?

  • There is no cost for the Sacraments of the Church.
  • An optional thank offering may be given to the church. This is used for the ongoing ministry of the parish for Children’s and Youth Ministry (First Third).