Are you invited to a little one’s upcoming Baptism? Feeling unsure about gift ideas? Read on – I’ll help you better understand what Baptism is all about and offer some appropriate gift choices in a variety of price points.
Many of us have been baptized or attended a Baptism. But perhaps years have passed since you’ve attending a Baptism (also called a christening). Here is a bit of a refresher. Simply put, Baptism is the admission and acceptance into a Christian church and into a specific denomination in most cases. In some churches, notably the Roman Catholic church, Baptism also removes the taint of original sin, with which all humans are born (due to Adam’s fall in Eden). A first important distinction to be made in the world of Baptism is between infant/child Baptism and Baptism of adults (or anyone deemed to be the age of consent). Baptist and Pentecostal churches celebrate this “older” Baptism. Catholics, Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians and many other Christian churches adhere to the tradition of infant or child Christening. This article will focus on gift ideas for infants and very young children who are being baptized.
Each denomination may celebrate Baptism in different ways, but there is often a specific and traditional liturgy that accompanies the ceremony. Water is poured over or sprinkled upon the christened child. This water ritual is tied to biblical practices. Godmothers and godfathers are also usually a part of the event. Godparents are intended to promote and protect the child’s faith and spirituality,
Christening gifts for a baby boy or girl are as much about the family as they are about the infant. After all, an infant will not be able to appreciate their Baptism gift for months or years to come, but the family will cherish it immediately. Therefore, Baptism gifts should be made with mom and dad in mind.
Baptism gifts can be personalized and/or religious and/or a keepsake and/or none of the above – some are just fun and cute! There is nothing wrong with any “type” of gift choice. In fact, it is variety that makes a baby boy or girl’s Christening gifts interesting and useful to the family.
Personalized Baptism gifts:
Some options in this category include engraved photos frames and personalized Baptism certificate holders. If the Baptismal boy or girl has a saint’s name, you might select a medal, plaque or prayer card with that saint’s name and story.
Religious Baptism gifts:
A crib medal makes a great christening gift for boys or girls. Placing a crib medal near the child’s resting place is a time-honored religious tradition intended to harken the spirit of a guardian angel as the child sleeps. Baby rosaries are also a popular christening gift. While a tiny baby may not use it immediately, many families introduce rosary prayers to toddlers. A little girl or boy will appreciate having a kiddie rosary that fits their hands and makes bead grasping easier.
Keepsake Baptism gifts:
Almost every christening gift is a keepsake in its own way because most families cherish everything from their baby’s first few months, especially any mementos from special occasions. However, if you are very close with the Baptismal boy or girl, there are a few presents that will become family treasures or particularly honored keepsakes. For example, you could gift a baby boy or girl with a christening gown or suit. Boys and girls wear gowns, whereas suits are typically worn only by boys. Many families will use the same gown for subsequent children and they may even pass from generation to generation. If the baby already has a gown, you could consider gifting the family with certain accessories, like a christening bonnet or blanket. These items, too, are often worn by future boys or girls who are being christened.
Other Baptism gifts:
Maybe you want to give something a little more fun or practical to as a Baptism gift to the baby boy or girl. There are books and toys that may have a religious message, but with a focus on learning and enjoying. Cash can also be given – the family will usually put it in a savings account.
Remember, too, that your presence is the present at a christening. This event really is all about ceremony, ritual, God, and the gathering of a little one’s family, friends and supporters. No gift required!