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What is Baptism?

Baptism (also known as a Christening) is a 'sacrament'; a visible sign of God's love. Anyone who presents themselves for Baptism is thanking God for their gift of life and publicly acknowledging his love.

The first step along a journey of faith with God our Father is to recognise that every human is capable of sin and that we all need to turn away from the darkness of evil and to make a new start.

The Parish Church of St. John the Evangelist here in Mickleover welcomes people of all ages seeking Baptism. In doing so they will become a member of both the local and worldwide Christian family.

Whilst babies and toddlers may not be able to make the decision to become Baptised Christians themselves, we welcome their parents/carers to come and discuss Baptism with us on their behalf.

The Church of England's general approach to Baptism is explained on their website. This includes a range of useful information to help you to make this important decision. However, we include some basic information below about Baptisms at St John's.

Arranging a Baptism

If you wish to a discuss a Baptism, please contact the Rev'd Peter Walley on (Derby) 513793 or email on

Please note that there is no charge for the Baptism service.

Baptisms normally take place during our main 10am Sunday service. This is so that you/your child can be seen to be joining the family of the Church and be welcomed into membership. In turn the Church will promise to support and pray for you/your child.

Rest assured that the service will be explained to you in advance and you will be gently led through it on the day as well. The priest will make sure you know where to sit and when you need to move. Some parts of the service will be for the whole congregation to join, with other parts specifically for you and the child's Godparents.

Making Decisions and Promises

During the service, you will be asked to declare publicly that you believe in God and that you/your child will continue on the journey to follow Jesus.

The declarations are made using the questions below, which you will be asked in front of the church congregation. Essentially you are declaring that you have decided to turn away from everything which is evil or sinful and instead to turn towards Christ.

Where the baptism is taking place for a baby/toddler, the questions will be answered on the child's behalf by their parents/carers and Godparents.

  • Do you turn to Christ?
    I turn to Christ.
  • Do you repent of your sins?
    I repent of my sins.
  • Do you renounce evil?
    I renounce evil.

Clearly these are very big questions. If you feel unable to say them in front of God and the Church, then feel free to talk to us about a service called 'Thanksgiving for the Gift of a Child'.

Whilst this is not Baptism, it gives thanks to God for the child and the child is blessed. If you choose to have a Thanksgiving, we could then work with you on the way to Baptism if you so desire.

Role of Godparents

When a child is being Baptised, the child is assigned Godparents who make the same declarations as the child's parents.

As part of their role, they promise to pray for and support the child, and help the parents to bring up the child in the Christian faith. It is an important responsibility and therefore must be undertaken by people who are Baptised Christians themselves.

The child should have at least three Godparents. Usually this is two of the same sex as the child and one of the opposite sex. Godparents can be family members or friends. However, it is important that you choose people who will take an interest in your child's spiritual welfare.