BAPTISM AND CONFIRMATION
The sacrament of baptism has been a major part of ministry in the circuit over the years. At a recent meeting of the presbyteral staff we reflected together on the current guidance in respect to managing risk related to Covid 19. We also reflected on the theological, practical and pastoral aspects of celebrating Christian baptism.
In the light of this we have come to the conclusion that we are unable to offer baptism at this time whilst also taking all necessary steps to keep people safe.
We will keep this under regular review at our staff meetings as the guidance develops and changes.
We will report back when we feel that it may be possible to recommence our baptismal ministry. At that time we will need to carefully assess risk and also the impact on churches.
Questions about Baptism and Confirmation
How do we go about getting our child baptised?
Do different denominations have different baptisms?
There is one baptism, which is recognised by all the mainstream Churches that baptise, including the Methodist Church and the Church of England.
Can you be baptised as a child and as an adult - for instance if you return to the Church after a break?
Some parents believe, on reflection, that a service of baptism is not the most appropriate service for them and their child. They may think it is too weighty in terms of their own faith, or that the promises involved go beyond what they can say with integrity.
Some parents may be adopting a child who has already been baptised.
Some may have a child who was baptised in emergency circumstances in hospital or at home.
Other parents, who may themselves be committed Christians, feel strongly (because baptism is so meaningful) that they want their child to be able to ask for baptism, if and when they are ready to respond for themselves.
All nevertheless want to thank God publicly now for the safe arrival of their child and express their love for that child. This can be done at a service called an 'Act of Thanksgiving after the Birth or Adoption of a Child'.
If you are not sure whether Baptism or an Act of Thanksgiving would be more appropriate for you and your child, talk it through with your minister, who will be able to advise.