Christenings on the decrease

Posted on October 23, 2013 by Judy | Filed under: Babies, Baby Naming, Celebrant, General

Despite all the interest in HRH Prince George’s christening today, generally, the number of church christenings is falling year on year.  In figures published by the BBC, one in 3 children was baptised in the Church of England in 1980 (when HRH Prince William was christened).  By 2011, the figure had fallen to just over one in 10.   Overall, there were 266,000 christenings in 1980, which declined to 140,000 in 2011.    There is a similar situation in the Catholic church as people move away from religious ceremonies.

It is no coincidence that civil naming ceremonies are on the rise.  The Church recognises the drift away and according to   the Archdeacon of Leicester, Tim Stratford, “… the Church is soon to advise using the term “supporting friend”.  explaining that the Church is soon to advise using the term “supporting friend”.”It’s the Church trying to catch up with emerging trends in society, he adds, in a report to the BBC.

“Naming ceremonies are on the rise and are something that we would probably expect to see increase in the coming years,” says Sarah Barrett, managing editor of parenting website BabyCentre.

It is certainly something that I, as a celebrant would endorse.   Parents still want to mark the arrival of their longed-for baby (whether by birth or adoption).  More people are turning to a personalised, celebrant-led service although some parents are put off, believing that the only alternative to a church service is a humanist non-religious ceremony.  Not so!  An independent celebrant will include any religion or none, or even a blend of religious content.      You can have however many supporting adults you wish – and you can call them whatever you want: Mentors, Supporters, Responsible Adults,  ‘OddParents’ – and GodParents is fine too!  The location too, is up to you:  the beach, your garden, a hotel or a village hall…. the choice is yours!

A Cherish Naming Ceremony will include poetry, readings, symbolic gestures such as a professionally made personalised candle to light on the child’s birthday each year…   You will receive a copy of the Naming Day Script, together with a quality naming day gift for your child.   You will also have a commemorative certificate for you, and we can provide them for Grandparents and Godparents too.   We can also recommend quality suppliers in the Midlands of silver fingerprint jewellery, as well as Cake Makers, Florists, Photographers, and a wonderful Tea Party specialist.

The cost of this ceremony is £150, and £75 for additional children.

If you want to welcome your child or children with a naming ceremony, contact Cherish Ceremonies on 07713 278699  or by completing the form on the ‘Contact Us page, or by email to

Family and baby


Recommended Suppliers:  (do tell them Cherish Ceremonies sent you!)

Kirstie of Silver FingerPrint Jewellery –

Lucinda The Balloon Lady –

Claire of Hibiscus Flowers –

Darren of Darren Bedding Photography –

Jodie of Jodie Cooling Photography –

Sabina of  Anibas Photography –  (Based in Normandy, France)

Victoria of Chipping Norton Tea Set –