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Posts Tagged ‘Christening Advice’

I really do dread this time of year. Not only am I exposed to an excess of my mother-in-law, whose mild insanity becomes more pronounced each Christmas, I also suffer severe bank related stress due to the legion of godchildren I have been lumbered with over the last couple of decades … each of the little blighters seems to expect a seasonal yuletide prezzie from yours truly. I used to leave this rather onerous task to the lady wife, but she went on strike a few years ago after we received a text one Christmas which simply read; “Tx 4 prznt – nxt yr cash is fine”

With boys and girls of so many different ages to cater for, choosing the right prezzie can be a pain in the proverbial … until I hit on a cunning plan – buy them all exactly the same thing every year. Basically collect a set of something (anything) for them a piece at a time. Start a canteen of cutlery for when they leave home, collect limited edition pieces (plates, figurines, coins etc) – basically find something that you don’t need o think about year on year … the kids will hate you for it, but the parents seem to appreciate the effort.

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This may sound pretty obvious, but when planning your speech or toast for your godchild don’t forget to say a few words about the other godparents. It’s all too easy to forget your partners in crime in your Christening speech.

Amazingly, although the parents of your godchild are either close friends or relatives of the mother and father, it is often the case that the godparents don’t know each other very well. It can be a bit unnerving when you turn up at the Christening to find a completely new side to your friends’ lives of which you have little knowledge. You are probably a good mate of the father from way back in the past, but you’ve seldom set eyes on the other godparents. You get introduced to the mother’s best mate from university, who you have vaguely heard of and may have seen at the wedding and the father’s brother who has been living in Dubai for the last ten years who you last talked to on the stag night.

So see if you can have a quick chat with the other godparents before the Christening and see if there is anything they want you to say. When you get to the speech you can include them more successfully and hopefully avoid one of my early Grumpy Godfather faux pas when I capped a particularly turgid Christening Speech by forgetting the other godparents’ names …

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Recently published statistics from the New York City Department of Health have shown a sudden surge in the number of parents naming their sons “Jayden”. In fact the name has become so popular that it is now number two in their list.

Why?

Well, it turns out that this is the name that Britney Spears has given to her son … so it’s totally reasonable that anybody else in their right mind would also wish to Christen their own child “Jayden” as well isn’t it?

I mean, think about it, in later life a child won’t be stigmatised in any way for carrying a celeb name plucked from popular culture at the time of their birth. We don’t pre-judge kids we meet today just because they are called Wayne or Chardonnay or Kylie or even Britney now do we?

Another name you may wish to consider when Christening your son is Keanu, while for your daughter, what about Madonna, Shakira and Kiera … they really will thank you for it when they grow up.

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As a godfather or godmother, making a speech after the Christening can be daunting. We have looked at lots of different ways of approaching a Christening speech or toast, but, if you are looking for more ideas, don’t forget your godchild’s parents.

This may seem an obvious suggestion, but it is easy to overlook two of the most important people present at the service.

Firstly, it is worth talking to them before the big day to ask if there is anything they would like you to say. There may be a relative who has travelled a long way who deserves a mention or a friend who has been particularly supportive during the pregnancy who needs recognition. There may be something they would like you to say on their behalf.

Secondly, they’ve probably put a lot of effort into planning the Christening day, which is no mean feat considering all the other stresses and strains placed on young parents. So it is worth including a few words about Mum & Dad … how well they’ve done, how lucky your godchild is etc etc

Good luck with the speech!

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Here’s another sweet Christening toast for the end of that Christening Speech:

“May the Lord cradle you in His hand, but never close His fist too tight.
May your pockets always be heavy and your heart always be light.”

Good luck if you have to make a Christening Speech this weekend!

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We’ve touched on the difficulties of making a speech at the Christening a few times (see speech). Here a just a few more thoughts for what you may wish to include:

Congratulate the parents on the production of such a beautiful child.

Congratulate the child on choosing to be born into such a close and loving family.

Thank the parents for giving you the honour and responsibility of being the little bundle of joy’s godparent.

Reassure everyone that you will be there for the child through good times and bad.

And don’t forget to thank the vicar / priest, thank all the guests for coming, thank whoever was responsible for providing the food and drink.

Keep it short, don’t get too emotional, avoid “in” jokes and finish off with a toast.

I was at a Christening once for a lad called James and his godfather simply raised a glass and said: “Lucky Jim” …. I wouldn’t recommend being quite this brief.

See Christening Toasts for more ideas

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Making a Christening toast at the end of a Christening speech is a skill. Making them meaningful and witty is nigh impossible. Here are a few that I have heard or used in the past:

“Ladies and gentlemen, please raise your glasses and drink a toast to young Billie – wealth, health & happiness.”

“Be loving with your family, selfless with your friends and generous to everyman.”

“We wish young Billie good fortune, health and peace on his journey through life. May he find love and comfort when he is troubled, may he find true friendship as he grows and may he learn to be kind and considerate to everyone he meets over what we hope will be a long and happy life.”

“For a head that will always be bright, a stomach that will always be full and a heart that will always be happy…”

If you have any additional Christening toasts or any other Christening speech ideas, please add them to the comments below. You never know when you might need them.

See Christening Toasts for more ideas

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