At a baptism service, we welcome a new person into the family of St Peter's Church and into the Berkhamsted community in the presence of God. For your child, it marks the start of a lifelong journey of faith as part of the local and worldwide Christian family.
During the service, parents thank God for His gift of life, make a decision to start their child on a journey of faith and godparents promise help and support. The church also promises to welcome the child and to pray for the family.
Christenings held at St Peter’s are usually on the fourth Sunday of the month at 12 noon.
Other times by arrangement.
When you bring your child for baptism, you will be asked to declare publicly that you believe in God and that you will bring your child up to follow Jesus. You will be asked to answer, on your child's behalf, that you have decided to turn away from everything which is evil or sinful and instead to turn towards Christ. The declarations made by you and the child's godparents will be made in front of the church congregation; the local Christian community will promise to support you and pray for you and your child.
During the service we use ancient symbols of Christian initiation:
You can read more about the baptism service on the Church of England website - it explains the what happens in church and the symbolic actions we use.
Parents are asked to make public declarations during the service - these are all written in the order of service. Before the baptism, you will be guided through running order of the service by the priest leading the baptism, so you won't get lost on the day.
As a godparent you have a special role: you make a public promise to help the child to come to know God, to encourage them in their spiritual life and to support them in their membership of the local church. It is a big responsibility but it is also a good opportunity to think about your own faith - but don't forget that the church is here to support you. If you have any questions, get in touch with the clergy at St Peter's, as they will be very happy to help.
The Church of England's guide to the baptism service offers useful information for parents and godparents.
For more information please contact: