We’re delighted that you want to have your child baptised, and we want to help make this a very special and meaningful occasion for all.
If you are thinking about baptism, we would encourage you to come along on a Sunday to get a feel for the church community here at St Oswald’s. We would love you to join us on at least 3 times before the baptism and attend a baptism information meeting where you will learn about what baptism is all about and the practical arrangements for the service. If godparents can come too that’ll be great.
We do not assume that those who ask for baptism have an understanding of the Christian faith and therefore appreciate what they are asking for and the promises they will make. Below are some basic questions with answers that we hope will help you consider what your next step might be.
What is baptism?
Baptism is an important first step in the spiritual life of an individual. It marks the beginning of a journey that will last a lifetime and is often the first response, on your child’s/children’s behalf, in thanksgiving to God for his love and for all he has made.
In the Baptism Service serious promises are made, first by members of the Church who pledge to support and help the child or individual, and then promises by the parents and Godparents. The service ends with a welcome to those who have been baptised.
Can I have my child baptised in St Oswald’s Church?
To have a baptism at St Oswald’s either you need to live in the parish or have connections with St Oswald’s church.
When do baptism services take place?
We hold Baptism services at 10am on the second Sunday of each month.
How old should my child be for baptism?
There is no age restriction for the baptism of babies or young children, though older children will need to consent to being baptised.
When should I apply for baptism?
We receive many requests for baptism during the year, so please apply early if you have a specific date in mind. In any case an application for baptism should be received at least two weeks before the chosen date, but please be aware that if there are already two families booked for that date your application may have to wait for another available service.
Who should I choose to be Godparents?
It is a requirement of the Church of England that all Godparents must themselves be baptised as Christians. Ideally, they should also be confirmed members of the church and regularly attend church services. This is important as one of the promises they will be asked to make is that they will draw your child by their example into the community of faith and help them to take their place within the life and worship of Christ’s church. A Godparent does not need to be a relative but can be a close family friend who will maintain a keen interest in the spiritual and physical well-being of your child/children.
What does it cost?
Baptism is free. Any gifts you may wish to make will be gratefully received and will contribute to the considerable regular running and maintenance costs of St. Oswald’s Church.
What if I’m not sure I’m ready to take this step?
Baptism is a big decision and one which should not be taken lightly. If you are not sure you are ready to make the promises required by the Church of England, we do offer a Service of Thanksgiving. This is a special, but simple, service which is a lovely time when you can be with friends and family, ask for God’s blessing and pray for your baby. It’s different to a Baptism, so read here to discover whether this is something you would like to explore further.
What should I do next?
If you would like to apply for a Baptism service or a service of Thanksgiving, please contact Bryan Milner on 01904 652782 or [email protected] who will tell you what to do next. For baptism, a form will be sent to you for completion.
What happens next?
We receive many requests for baptism during the year, so please contact us as soon as you can. You will then be invited to our next Baptism Information Evening.
This is a short meeting held in church with others who have asked for a baptism. At this meeting we will look at the Baptism Service, the promises you will be asked to make, the role of a Godparents and who can be a Godparent. At the end of the meeting, should you wish to go forward with the baptism then we can discuss what future Sundays are available. If, on reflecting on the information and discussions at this meeting, you are not sure you are ready to make the promises required by the Church of England, we can discuss a Service of Thanksgiving.
We look forward to meeting you and your child/children. We would love to welcome you and have the opportunity to get to know you at any of our services before the date of the baptism/thanksgiving. We also run “St Oswald’s Tots” a baby/toddler and parent/carer group on Thursday morning during term time. You would be most welcome to join us there!