WEST GRIMSBY TEAM MINISTRY
TOGETHER IN GROWTH, WITNESS AND WORSHIP
ST. NICOLAS’ GREAT COATES
ST. MICHAEL’S, LITTLE COATES
ST. GEORGE’S, BRADLEY
Questions people ask about Godparents
How many Godparents do we need?
Most people choose three Godparents -
The Godparents need to have been baptised themselves.
There is nothing to stop you having more than three if you want. Only two are needed.
One or both parents (if baptised) can be Godparents to their own child, in which case only one further Godparent is needed.
You might like to think which of your friends is most likely to want to keep the promises which Godparents make -
their Godchild, set them an example of Christian living, and help them take their place within the life and worship of the church.
More information here…
Why do Godparents need to have been baptised themselves?
The first people to be baptised were all adults. It was a huge step to take. They often faced persecution and even death for becoming Christians. Sometimes these adults were baptised with their whole family. The first babies to be baptised were baptised when their parents became Christians.
Over time, baptising babies on their own became normal.
The Baptism of babies is always in a Christian context. This is why Godparents who present children for Baptism need to have been baptised themselves. It is also why they make promises about Christian faith on behalf of their Godchild
One of the Godparents we have chosen has not been baptised. Can he or she be baptised quickly and then be a Godparent?
The Baptism of an adult only really makes sense when the adult is someone who is seriously exploring commitment to the Christian church. We would normally prepare a new adult Christian over a period of time before they are baptised. Usually we would prepare them to confirm their faith at the same time. Adult Baptism is not something which can be done quickly.
If they live in this parish, they are welcome to ask about our short Enquirers’ Groups for those who want to find out more without making any commitment. We can also tell you when our next preparation course for Confirmation is planned. If they live in another parish, they can go along to their local church and then see whether preparing for Baptism is appropriate for them there.
But we are sorry that this usually means that they cannot become a godparent at short notice.
Our friend really wants to be a special person in the life of our child, but is not baptised. Is there anything else we can do?
From time to time we have added prayers at the end of a Baptism service for those who are not parents or religious Godparents but who are going to play a special part in their lives. We can use the names of specific people at this point in the service so that they are fully included in the service without making any promises.