This page is to help you concerning a service for your child at St John’s Church. Congratulations if you have had a recent addition to your family, but don’t worry if the child is older. We hope that you and your family will find a warm welcome here.
The birth of a child is always a special time and many parents, like yourselves, want to mark the occasion with a service in church. We want to help you to do this.
When we are given a gift, it is right to say ‘thank you’. The Bible says, ‘children are a gift from the Lord’ - and so we should thank him for them. Traditionally, parents brought their children to give thanks to God in a special church service.
Although it has fallen out of use in many churches, the first thing we will arrange with you is this opportunity to say ‘thank you’ to the Lord - we call this a Thanksgiving Service.
The Thanksgiving Service
The Thanksgiving Service is included within the main morning service at 10am at St John’s.
The Bible says that on one occasion, Jesus ‘took ... children in his arms, put his hands on them and blessed them.’ In the Thanksgiving Service, we follow Jesus’ example. We will thank God for your child and ask for his blessing for him or her. An outline of the service is available - click to open a new window (pdf format).
You may invite sponsors, and we will give you a certificate to mark the occasion. This service does not require you or the sponsors to make any promises. The service is free, and an application form is available to print and complete (pdf format) (alternatively, please contact the church office for a copy).
What about Christening?
Most parents come to us asking ‘can I have my child christened?’ (or ‘baptised’, which is the same thing).
In the Baptism Service, parents and godparents make important promises before God. These include a commitment to regular church-going as an example to your child, and a declaration that you are a committed follower of Jesus Christ yourself. For this reason, you may decide that the Thanksgiving Service by itself is right for you.
If however, after the Thanksgiving Service, you want to explore the possibility of baptism for your child, we will gladly help you to do this - please have a word with one of the ministers.
To arrange a Thanksgiving Service, please fill in the application form and return it to a minister or the church office. On the date the minister agrees with you for the service, please arrive 10 minutes early.
In the meantime, why not start coming to church if you don’t already? On Sundays you and your family will find a warm welcome at the 10am service at St John’s. We also run a toddler group during the week.
All the information on this page is also available in brochure format.