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Service of Thanksgiving

Colin and MollyYou may feel that the Service of Thanksgiving & Blessing suits the needs of your family rather than the Baptism Service.

The full text is printed below for your consideration.

Introduction

We are here today to give thanks for these children, with their family and friends, and to support their parents in their responsibilities with prayer and love. God became one of us in Jesus, and understands all that surrounds the arrival and upbringing of children.

It is God’s purpose that children should know love within the stability of their home, grow in faith, and come at last to the eternal city where his love reigns supreme.

Loving God, you hold all things in life and call us into your kingdom of peace;

help us to walk the path of your truth and fill our lives with gratitude and faith,

through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Reading

A suitable passage from the Bible is read, and other readings may be included

Thanksgiving and Blessing

Where parents wish to recognize the role of supporting friends it may be appropriate for them to stand with the parents at the thanksgiving.

Do you receive these children as a gift from God?

We do.

Do you wish to give thanks to God and seek his blessing?

We do.

God our creator, we thank you for the wonder of new life

and for the mystery of human love.

We thank you for all whose support and skill

surround and sustain the beginning of life.

We thank you that we are known to you by name and loved by you from all eternity.

We thank you for Jesus Christ, who has opened to us the way of love.

We praise you, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Blessed be God for ever.

What name have you given this child?

A parent or supporting friend replies

His/her name is N.

The minister takes the child

As Jesus took children in his arms and blessed them,

so now we ask God’s blessing on N.

Heavenly Father, we praise you for his/her birth;

surround him/her with your blessing that he/she may know your love,

be protected from evil, and know your goodness all his/her days.

When all the children have been prayed for

May they learn to love all that is true,

grow in wisdom and strength

and, in due time, come through faith and baptism

to the fullness of your grace;

through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The minister prays for the parents

May God the Father of all bless these parents

and give them grace to love and care for their children.

May God give them wisdom, patience and faith,

help them to provide for the children’s needs

and, by their example,

reveal the love and truth that are in Jesus Christ.  Amen.

Giving of the Gospel

A copy of a Gospel is presented, with these words

Receive this book.  It is the good news of God’s love.  Take it as your guide.

The minister addresses the supporting friends

Will you do all that you can to help and support N and N in the bringing up of N?

With the help of God,we will.

The minister addresses the wider family and friends

Will you do all that you can to help and support this family?

With the help of God,we will.

This prayer may be said by the parents or by the whole congregation

God our creator, we thank you for the gift of these children,

entrusted to our care.

May we be patient and understanding,

ready to guide and to forgive,

so that through our love

they may come to know your love;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Jesus taught us to call God our Father, and so we have the courage to say

Our Father, who art in heaven….

The minister pronounces God’s blessing on the congregation and the service ends.

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