Naming Your Baby - How to Get the Most out of Your Babynaming Ceremony
You've engaged a celebrant and you've picked the day. So how do you ensure that the naming ceremony for your baby goes smoothly and is memorable for friends and relatives alike? Focus on two things - preparation for the ceremony, and how things are organised on the day.
- Choose your child's godparents with care, talk to them about the promises they feel able to make, and ask them if they would feel comfortable about sharing with everyone at the ceremony some of their thoughts about your child and your family
- Consider other members of the family and significant friends, whether present or not, and how you might recognise, include or honour them in the ceremony
- Choose the venue with care, paying attention to shade, and sufficient space
- On the invitations include the time guests should arrive and the time the ceremony will start. If you know any of your guests are chronic latecomers, invite them for at least 15 minutes before you expect them to arrive
- If using candles in an outdoor ceremony ensure that the wicks are well protected from wind, breeze or drafts - candles that sit well down in a glass container are ideal. Because the flame on votive candles extends above the container they are not suitable
On the Ceremony Day
- Ensure the table for the signing is big enough to comfortably hold the register, certificates and anything else that will be used during the ceremony (candles, etc).
- Delegate someone to photograph the ceremony and alert the celebrant as to whom that person is
- Take the opportunity to have posed family photographs, and photographs of significant friends taken with the child either before or after the ceremony. Draw up a list beforehand and use it as a checklist so that no-one is missed
- Provide seats for older or disabled guests
- Make sure that any seating or shelter provided is close enough to where you and the celebrant will be standing to form an intimate grouping and ensure that everyone hears and sees the ceremony
- Limit the amount of alcohol served before the ceremony
Attention to all these quite simple things will make the world of difference to how smoothly your celebration runs, and how much everyone, including you, enjoys the ceremony.