Baby Christenings: Why I Won’t Be A Part of Them

Do you have any Godchildren? I don’t. I’ve never been asked, which is absolutely fine with me because to be honest it’s just going to be an awkward conversation. Most of my mum friends came after children had been had. I’m not really in touch with many people from school, let alone close enough to be considered a Godparent and those that I am friends with don’t have kids of their own yet. I don’t come from a particularly religious family although I was Christened when I was young. My sister was too. Then my youngest sister came along and she wasn’t as a baby. She did decide to get Christened when she was older because she wanted presents but I don’t think I went. I think I was living away from home at that point. Since then there have been other family Christenings that I haven’t gone to and I decline the invitation on principle. I don’t agree with them.

I always start thinking about things like this around this time of year, with Easter just around the corner. I don’t really know what to do with Easter. I get Evie a chocolate egg but other than that it’s the same as any other Sunday except Adam doesn’t have to work. I don’t cook a big dinner and the fact that shops are closed just means we’re stuck inside and need to makesure we aren’t low on anything the day before. I don’t even really talk that much about the Easter bunny although he seems to be held in high esteem according to Evie. It’s a bit different to Christmas, because I’m all about the presents. I don’t really care if that makes me a bit hypocritical but Christmas has never been about anything that being with family to me. We don’t go to Church, we don’t do Midnight Mass, we don’t thank anyone for dinner except the person that’s cooked it. I’ve watched Evie’s school nativity plays and I’ve been to her Christmas shows at the Church. I’m happy she’s learned about what Christmas was about and what Easter is about but that doesn’t mean it’s all true…

Evie wasn’t Christened, despite her dad’s family being Catholic. I felt a lot of pressure and was asked ‘Why’ quite a lot and had to be really firm in my answer. I do worry that she has been Christened in secret since I left my ex but it’s never a subject I’ve asked and one I don’t really need to find out the answer to. I find them pointless. I know a lot of people do them for traditional reasons, as a way to get family together and all of that but for me, personally, that’s not good enough. When you decide to Christen a baby you are agreeing to bring them up as a Christian, something I am not, although that isn’t why disagree with Christenings. I disagree with them because I see it as making a decision for someone else that really doesn’t affect you in anyway. It’s a lot different when the child comes to you and says “I believe in God, I want to be Christened and I want to learn all about it.” Fine, that is their choice. Although, in all honesty, I don’t think I’d be able to organise that for them. I wouldn’t want to be a part of it because I would feel like a complete fraud.

Maybe this makes me a little selfish, but for the same reasons I won’t ever agree to be a Godparent to someone else’s child. I’m not going to stand there and confirm to bringing up a child in the eyes of a God I don’t believe in. I don’t really want to be a part of it at all. I don’t agree with taking away a choice where faith is such a personal thing. For the same reasons, I won’t be Christening any children I have. I won’t be selecting Godparents for this baby. This has actually caused upset before, and I’m sorry for that, but ultimately, it just goes against everything I believe in. When this baby is here I’m sure we’ll see lots of family and friends in the weeks afterwards and introduce them to our baby. I’m sure we will receive lots of wonderful congratulations and cards. I’m sure everyone will be excited. For me, that’s enough. That’s enough of a celebration for a new life. For me, there’s no need for a Christening, a naming day or any other big celebration like that because to be honest I really can’t be bothered with it all.



  1. Thank you for sharing such an honest post. I completely understand and respect your views on this. I had both my girls christened and will be having this baby christened too. Hubby and I are both Christians and go to church regularly. For us, it isn’t about making the decision for our children though, it’s about teaching our children about why we believe what we believe and why our faith is a big part of our lives. The decision about whether to embrace that faith for themselves is very much for them to make though. We chose godparents who share our faith because for us that is a key part of being a godparent. I actually wish more people were honest about their reasons for getting their children christened (or not). I have been to many christenings where the parents and godparents are clearly uncomfortable being in church and it does make me wonder why on earth they are promising to bring their child up in a faith that they don’t seem to have themselves. If it’s just about a celebration of that child being in the world and choosing friends to help guide them through life, then there are so many other ways of doing that outside of a church environment. I also think that people should feel able to decline an offer to be a godparent if they don’t feel comfortable taking on that role. We made it clear to our friends who we asked to be godparents that we would be honoured to have them accept, but equally we would understand if they chose not to accept. I’ve been in the position of being told I was a godparent to a friend’s child at the door to the church on arriving at the christening. In that moment, it felt impossible to say no. I’ve not seen that child since that day and I would have declined had I been asked sooner because I didn’t feel I was a big enough part of that child’s life to take on that role. I do think that christenings and the reasons for choosing them are something that people should think more about. Sorry for the long ramble! 🙂

    1. Author

      Ah I’m so glad you get where I’m coming from!! Thank you for such an honest comment. The difference, of course, is that it’s your faith and being of faith you want to share that with your children. I suppose it’s the same as me, being of no faith and just not really feeling it’s needed.

      I get where you’re coming from too, you would want to be active in the child you are being a godparent’s life rather than it being a little rushed.

      You are right too, there are so many ways of celebrating a baby rather outside, and I’ve learned, in a church environment which doesn’t require a christening but more of a blessing.

      Either way, it’s a personal choice I think! 🙂

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