St. Stephen's Church, Tonbridge
with St. Eanswythe's Mission
Powered by the presence of God, shaped for the purposes of God

Baptism and Thanksgiving


Baptisms & thanksgiving for the birth of a child


We offer two options for parents of new babies, baptism and a service of thanksgiving.  These are different, but the choice does not have to be made until after you've been on a short preparation course. The date of the next course is to be decided.
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Baptism (otherwise known as christening) symbolises God's care for each one of us and is a chance to state publicly that we accept his call on our lives and want the same for our children.

 When you have your baby baptised, you're declaring that you would like him or her to grow up knowing God's love and to follow Jesus for the rest of their life. During the service, parents and godparents are asked to declare that they themselves are followers of Jesus and will bring the baby up as a member of the Christian church.

These are serious promises.  It's therefore important that parents have a chance to think through the meaning of baptism and whether it's what they want.  


We ask anyone who's thinking about baptism to come on a short course (normally two evenings) to go over the basics.  We also like them to come to Sunday services over a period of time so they get to know the church into which their babies will be welcomed.

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For those who feel unable to make the promises in the baptism service but would still like to thank God publicly for the birth of their baby, we offer the alternative of a thanksgiving service.  Here again, we ask parents to attend the preparation course.  In some cases, parents who've come on the course with a view to baptism then opt for a service of thanksgiving.


Arranging the service


After the course, if you'd like to go ahead, we'll arrange a date for the baptism or service of thanksgiving depending on the choice you've made.  These take place once a month as part of our 10.30am service and are normally limited to three babies on any one occasion.


For more information, please contact the church office

or fill in the Baptism/Thanksgiving Request Form via the link below.

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Baptism and Thanksgiving Preparation Request Form
This form is for anyone enquiring about Baptism or Thanksgiving for a child