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Christening an older child. What happens then?

(14 Posts)
PrincessLayer Wed 12-Aug-09 23:51:25

Eldest DD age 9 has been going to the church with my mum since she was tiny. Not the services but the meetings and events my mum was involved with. Recently the church got a new keen vicar who is trying to get kids involved more, even starting a weekly youth club.

DD has recently been going to the Sunday church services and has an alter "job" (rings bells and carries thing about).

The vicar has asked if she would like to participate in a course, which by description sounds like confirmation classes.

Trouble is, I didn't have her (or the others) christened. As I'm not religious myself I thought it was fairly pointless and preferred to wait till she was old enough to make her own decisions. It appears that this is the time. (And I know she can't be confirmed un-christened)

DH is rather un-impressed by it all, even though I'm trying to put a positive spin on it.

Is it like when a baby is christened and parents/family/godparents are expected or can it be a more solo undertaking. I could probably rustle up a godmother or two at a push but I very much doubt I could convince DH to even turn up, never mind take part, and to be totally honest I don't know if I could join in without being a total hypocrite.

(Just to clarify that I am happy and have no objections to her joining the church. I just don't really want to join in myself)

GrimmaTheNome Wed 12-Aug-09 23:58:50

Is this CofE? I didn't think they did confirmation classes till more like teenage anyway.

PrincessLayer Thu 13-Aug-09 00:06:23

Yes, CofE, but what is apparently a high church. (And I know from previous experience that the ceremonies are very similar to the catholic church)

I was offered the confirmation classes when I was a similar age. I refused, much to my mothers dismay.

There are a few of them the oldest is about 12, and I think my DD is the youngest at 9 but she will be 10 by time it happens.

Concordia Thu 13-Aug-09 00:21:20

I see to recall when i got confirmed (ok it was 20 years ago in c of e so things may have changed) a few of the kids that got confirmed with me just got baptised first and did it all in 1. Bit weird - but maybe what's required. Perhaps as the vicar? I don't think you'll need godparents and all the stuff.
What does DD think about it? I guess it really has to be her decision now.

Concordia Thu 13-Aug-09 00:22:46

It's very common not to get children christened now (even among some church going families as people like to let them make up their own minds) so I don't think anyone will be too shocked.

PrincessLayer Thu 13-Aug-09 00:45:58

DD wants to be christened. She is very intelligent and knows what it entails. It is entirely her decision, and I trust her to make it.

She loves her involvement in the church, and I'm not going to discourage it. I am well aware there are much worse things she could be getting into.

AMumInScotland Thu 13-Aug-09 10:01:28

She can be christened as part of the same service when she is confirmed - I think it is still normal to have godparents/sponsors, but it doesn't have to include parents. I was confirmed as an adult in CofE and some people in my group had not been christened. It was no problem, I think they had "sponsors" who were other adults they knew who would be involved in helping them grow as Christians.

It also might not be confirmation classes - some churches in the CofE have classes for admission to communion at about that age, but leave confirmation till at least mid-teens when they are more able to make their own commitment. But to be admitted to communion she'd have to be christened, so in that case you might need to do that. But it still wouldn't need the parents to make the commitment, as 9 is old enough to speak for herself - the parents only need to speak for babies and small children who aren't making the choice for themself.

MaryBS Thu 13-Aug-09 10:07:26

If its high church, it might not be confirmation classes, it might be to receive communion. Many C of E churches (ours included) tend to allow children to receive communion before they are confirmed, with suitable training. But she will need to be baptised first.

Whether she is receiving communion or being confirmed, she can be baptised as part of the same ceremony. The vicar will/should check whether she's been baptised first anyway.

PrincessLayer Thu 13-Aug-09 11:39:53

Might not be confirmation then, she did say it is so she can take the communion, so probably that.

Thanks for the info. I'll get my mother to have a chat with the vicar on Sunday.

MaryBS Thu 13-Aug-09 13:18:13

Also we had a girl who was 9-10yo, who wanted to receive communion. She was baptized and made her own declaration of faith - no need for Godparents (unless you/she wants them).

Let us know how it goes... (I'm just plain nosey!)

PrincessLayer Fri 14-Aug-09 00:40:11

I'll keep you informed!
Might be a while, apparently the vicar has gone on his jollies and won't be in for a 3 weeks. But I'll update as soon as I know anything.

DragonMamiCooksPotatoes Fri 14-Aug-09 18:42:04

I was christened a few weeks ago at the fantastically advanced age of 30. I didn't have to have any Godparents or Sponsors unless I wanted them. I think it's the same for older children too.

DragonMamiCooksPotatoes Fri 14-Aug-09 18:42:10

I was christened a few weeks ago at the fantastically advanced age of 30. I didn't have to have any Godparents or Sponsors unless I wanted them. I think it's the same for older children too.

DragonMamiCooksPotatoes Fri 14-Aug-09 18:42:33


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