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Frequently Asked Questions ... and Answers

When would a baptism happen?

We normally celebrate baptism during our main 10.00am service on a Sunday and we’ll work with you to find the most appropriate date for both the church calendar and your own family commitments. In particular circumstances, it may be possible to hold a separate ceremony at another time. The service will also include songs and hymns, a Bible reading and a short talk, often with an interactive element. Children are fully included in what’s happening, and there are often activities or jobs for them to do such as pouring the water into the font!

How much does baptism cost?

Nothing. The baptism service is entirely free of charge.

Is there an alternative to Christening if we’re not sure what we believe?

Yes - do get in touch for a conversation. We can help you explore the options and it may be that a Simple service of thanksgiving for the birth of your child may be a more appropriate choice.

What’s the difference between Baptism and Christening?

Not much! Sometimes Christening is associated with the naming of a child - whereas Baptism is the ceremony of invitation into a life of faith - but really they are one and the same. We might say: ‘During the baptism service, Fred and Freda will be christened’.

Who can be baptised?

Anyone! We can all choose to set out on this journey, and at any age - it’s not only for children. Baptism is a heartfelt response to an experience of the love of God in our lives. If you feel moved to make that sort of response for yourself, or on behalf of your child, then baptism is something to explore.

Where can funerals happen?

Many funeral services take place in a church before going on to a crematorium or cemetery/ graveyard for what is known as the ‘committal’ - i.e. a cremation or burial. However, it’s also possible to hold the whole service in the crematorium or even in the open air at the graveside. After a cremation, ashes can be buried in a separate service in a registered burial ground.

How much does a funeral cost?

The basic fee for a funeral service led by a Church of England minister in a church or crematorium is currently £206. There are a range of other fees for burial depending on the particular circumstances. Your funeral director will be able to incorporate these fees into the total cost of the funeral.

Can we have a funeral if we don’t go to church?

That doesn’t matter. Church of England ministers - and local church buildings - are available to serve anyone who lives in their parishes, whether they attend church or not, and we will always be sensitive to the particular needs, values and beliefs of each family we support.

Who can get married in church?

If either one of the couple lives within the parish of Long Ashton, Flax Bourton or Barrow Gurney then you automatically have a legal right to be married here in your local parish church. This right also extends to those who lived or worshipped here in the past, or have various types of family connection - such as parents or grandparents who were married or baptised here. You can check the list of so-called ‘qualifying connections’ here. Even if you don’t have a connection to the church or the village, it’s certainly not impossible to be married here. Please do get in touch to talk through the options.

Are there any restrictions on who can be married?

You must be old enough - at least 16 years and, if under 18 years, have your parents’ consent. It is not currently legally possible for same-sex couples to be married in the Church of England. There are special guidelines for those who have been divorced - but it’s not impossible to be married again in church and we can talk to you about your particular situation.

How much does it cost to get Married in Church?

There is one main fee for the marriage service - currently £480 - plus some other optional things you may wish to include such as ringing of bells, flowers or heating (if winter).

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