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are christenings and baptism the same thing?

we want to get our son christened, but want him to make up his own mind when he's old enough as to whether or not he wants to be baptized. I've heard they are the same thing, but I have also heard that they are 2 different things...

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Asked by lovingedward at 9:28 PM on Nov. 14, 2010 in Religion & Beliefs

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Answers (13)
  • technically, no....but the terms are interchanged often. I'm not sure of the definition (I looked it up when my DD got baptized in September, but can't remember), one has to do with a "naming of the child"....sorry I can't be more specific, but I googled it, so the info is out there. I just know that they're technically not the same.

    Answer by DMac08 at 9:30 PM on Nov. 14, 2010

  • In my opinion they are the same thing. I was raised Episcopalian and became Catholic when I got married. We baptized all three of our children and they had their first Holy Communion when they were 7. At about 16 they choose whether they want to be confirmed into the Catholic faith by their own decision. My older daughter did not and my son is struggling with this decision right now (I have an open question about it that I posted today...). I am hoping that they will refind their faith in whatever religion suits them when they are older.

    Answer by MeggieSwan at 9:32 PM on Nov. 14, 2010

  • A baptism is when the priest or pastor ( we are lutheran and I was catholic until my hubby and I met and got married ), but a baptism involves blessing the baby with holy water and a lighting of their candle. My niece and nephew had a christening at a Church of God and there was no holy water or candles....they were blessed on the forhead with oil. Also at a baptism there are Godparents, whom are to be their religious/spiritual guides in addition to parents. While at the Church of God, there had Godparents but the entire family present stood with the children.

    Answer by 2BlondeBabies at 9:38 PM on Nov. 14, 2010

  • They are not the same thing. People often do christenings during a ceremony offering the baby to God, and acknowledging that the baby really belongs to God. This is a beautiful thing, but not the same as a baptism.

    Answer by Iamgr8teful at 9:49 PM on Nov. 14, 2010

  • i am united methodist and they are basically the same thing (like pp said....baptism is with water). later on when they can choose for themselves it is called a confirmation if they choose to stay a member of the church.

    Answer by princessbeth79 at 9:51 PM on Nov. 14, 2010

  • whats the point of it, if he decides to not follow your faith?

    Answer by Zoeyis at 5:39 AM on Nov. 15, 2010

  • I don't think they are the same. A christening or "baptizing" a baby is a parent making a decision for their child. A baptism is a person choosing for themselves to make a public confession of their faith.


    Answer by asmcbride at 9:32 AM on Nov. 15, 2010

  • his father and I are non denominational.

    Comment by lovingedward (original poster) at 9:44 AM on Nov. 15, 2010

  • From what I understand, Infant Baptism/Christenings/Dedications are where the parents promise to raise the child in the faith, which are usually followed by Confirmations when the child reaches a certain age of understanding. The Confirmations act to take on the promises made by the parents unto oneself so that the child is then accepting the faith and so forth for him/herself.

    In other denominations, baptism is the choice of an older child/young adult who makes the conscious decision to dedicate their life to the faith.

    So in both situations there comes a choice when the child reaches a certain age of accountability. Sometimes a child can be dedicated without being baptized and then can be baptized upon the time of his/her choosing.

    People choose to baptize their infants for different reasons - symbolism, religious custom, in case something happens to the child before he/she can make the choice, etc, etc.

    Answer by bandgeek521 at 11:02 AM on Nov. 15, 2010

  • No they aren't. Christening a baby does nothing to get them wet, it doesn't "save" them. When he gets older, if he decides to accept Jesus as his savior then he should be baptized.

    Answer by hobbitswife04 at 3:55 PM on Nov. 15, 2010

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