Christening etiquette

(34 Posts)
treesntrees Thu 03-Oct-13 10:48:17

Am I being unreasonable to expect people attending a christening to behave as politely as they would like visitors to their home to behave. The church is the house of God and the second home of those who attend regularly. If the christening takes place during a normal service it is not appropriate to chatter among yourselves. Unless you are the child's parents or God parents it is not obligitary for you to attend the ceremony. You can meet up at the knees up venue afterwards. If you would like to attend the ceremony and don't know the procedure ask someone who does, or better still attend a service the week before so you have some idea how to behave. Finally please take your used tissues, crisp packets etc home with you. Someone has to clean the church afterwards and it is usually a small team of volunteers mostly in their sixties, seventies and eighties.

FrauMoose Thu 03-Oct-13 12:45:48

I think it may seem more like an entertainment or a show. And cinemas positively encourage people to graze while they watch.

Am tempted to suggest a sign saying, 'No crisps. Communion wafers only.'

2tiredtocare Thu 03-Oct-13 14:13:10

My 2 hour christening took place in a Anglican Church, it was a normal length service including sermon and psalms with the christening in the middle. It's quite a high church, in no way new age!

FrozenFlowers Thu 03-Oct-13 16:26:15

I'm not surprised at 2 hours. I go to a High Anglican church and our normal Sunday Mass is 1.5 hours. We had a baptism on Sunday and I think it probably stretched the service to about 1hr 45 minutes, maybe 1hr 50 minutes? Some things were cut or truncated to make room for the baptismal liturgy, but there's a lot to fit in at the best of times!

ErrolTheDragon Thu 03-Oct-13 16:36:04

>People don't automatically know how to behave in church.

No, but surely in any unfamiliar social setting you take your cues from the people around, surely?

nickelbabe Thu 03-Oct-13 16:56:43

you don't know how to behave in any unfamiliar surroundings,
1) ask someone else who is going
2) ask someone who might know
3) err on the side of caution and dress modestly (and please take a coat or cardi! churches can be freezing )
4) take food and drink with you if necessary, but don't crack the crisps open during the service (ie take quiet food!)

Tavv Thu 03-Oct-13 17:44:06

> I think it may seem more like an entertainment or a show.

I agree that many people seem to want to sit back and be entertained these days. Church is meant to be a community, not a cinema.

rallytog1 Thu 03-Oct-13 18:09:27

I think noisy children in church are great. They're a good reminder to older members of the congregation that church is for everyone. My 6mo DD loves to make loud announcements in the middle of prayers - I always feel that I should take her out but people tell me how lovely it is to hear her chattering and yelling. A lot of churches are well set up for kids, and even if they don't have a sunday school will offer bags of soft toys etc to keep little ones occupied. Sadly though, not all churches are like that.

Having said that though, I'm amazed by the lack of manners some adults show in church, usually at christenings. I've witnessed them answering mobile phones, chatting loudly during obviously contemplative bits and nipping across the aisle to have a chat with their mate during the sermon. I still believe the church should welcome people, no matter how they behave, but I honestly am dumbfounded sometimes at how some grown ups really have no idea how to behave in public. I don't think it's a matter of understanding how church works - it's a matter of having the manners to know that if someone is addressing a group of people that you're in, you don't start making a noise and doing your own thing.

Onesleeptillwembley Thu 03-Oct-13 18:15:34

I don't believe in god, so absolutely do not think of it as 'The house of god", but I do respect that it is a place where you act appropriately. Out of respect for the celebrant, the participating person/people and their families, and also the other people that go there to do their thing. Also out of respect for yourself. You wouldn't act inappropriately at work, school, in the bank etc. YANBU treesntrees.

SerialStudent Thu 03-Oct-13 18:16:01

Had same situation at my great nephews christening. My Bruce's friends and kids treating it like a play centre ....... honestly I was shock and their rudeness

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