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The Thanksgiving and Blessing of a Child
At the General Assembly of 2003, the Panel on Worship undertook to provide orders for the thanksgiving for and blessing of a child. The following information reports on the work in progress and provides material which might be used in the meantime.

The order

[Suggested Hymn: "Thy kingdom come, yea bid it come"]

Parent one and parent two have had their lives enriched and blessed by the gift of this child: (child's name). Today they have come here to thank God for his/her presence and the difference he/she has made to their lives.

Also, they have invited us as a congregation to share in their joy and on their behalf to ask Godís blessing upon child's name, and upon them, that they may worthily face the challenges and privileges of parenthood in the years ahead.

This we gladly do, in the name of Jesus Christ whose express wish was that children should be brought to him, and not be kept back, that He might lay His hands upon them and bless them.

Let all stand

[to parents]: In recognising the goodness of God in granting you the gift of the child you have brought before Him, do you earnestly desire that he/she be given Christís blessing in the manner He has appointed, and do you promise that you will be worthy and loving parents as long as he shall live?

[minister takes child]: child's name, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and in representation of Him, I now lay my hand upon you and commend you to the gracious care and protection of God through all your days, and may His richest blessing rest and abide with you always.

Congregations sings blessing

Let us pray: Hear us, Lord, as we pray for this family. In the trials and challenges of parenthood, surround them with your blessing. May they know that you are always there, always ready to love and protect, always able to lift us when we are cast down and to restore us to sanity and joy. Bless also the parents, go with them on their walk into the unknown future. Endow them with wisdom, courage and humour, so that with this child, your gift, they may explore with daily increasing wonder, the pathways of family life in peace and happiness.

Amen.

To view services used in selected Church of England churches, click here or here.  To view a service regularly used in Bradford, click here.
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