Christening switched to
pub after church ban
WHEN ecclesiastical regulations forced the cancellation of
a baptism in church, the christening was switched to the local pub.
Luke Thornton was baptised
using water from the
ladies' loo at his mum and dad's local in
Pontefract, in the Wakefield
diocese, after a communication hiccup meant the service had to be
moved only an hour before it was due to begin.
Mum Sam, 28, and dad
Alexander, 20, had planned to have
Luke baptised at All Saints Pontefract. They
spent weeks arranging the event and invited 40 relatives and friends.
But 60 minutes before the christening they were told that
legally the Celtic
Orthodox service they had
arranged could not go ahead in the Church of England building because
it only allowed Anglican baptisms.
they frantically contacted Robin Hood landlord Dave Smith.
He agreed -
and parents, baby and guest quickly switched venue.
Luke’s bath was brought from
home to act as a makeshift font and he was
baptised by Orthodox Bishop
Stephen Robson of York
in the pub tap room.
hour-long service went without a
hitch in front of a pub packed with
bemused imbibers. Luke’s
mother said “I
had to fill the bath from a tap in the ladies'
loo.- Everything went well.
Luke was cheerful and smiled all the time – apart from
a little cry when he was dunked in the water”
Stephen said: “Everyone at the
Robin Hood respected the baptism.
Drinkers even stopped smoking and turned the music off”
by permission from the
of England Newspaper March 2007