Baptism / Christening
Christening is the bringing of a young child into the church to announce their name to the community and welcome them into the church. The child is baptised by the water sprinkled on their forehead which signifies the washing away of sins. Because an infant cannot make promises, the parents and godparents make those promises on behalf of the child.
Adults who are new to church have had their name for a long time and so are not christened, but still can be baptised. In our benefice we only sprinkle water on the forehead, although some churches will fully immerse an individual as part of the ritual. Adults who are baptised are declaring that they believe in God and in his son Jesus Christ and promise to behave in a Christian manner.
This can often be the first contact that you have had with your local church. We welcome all those both young and old who have not been baptised and wish to be so.
There is some useful information here https://churchofenglandchristenings.org/
The attached link gives more information about the service itself: https://churchofenglandchristenings.org/stepbystep/
Please contact the Rector by email on Rector@ybsbenefice.org.uk, to discuss your circumstances further. In absence of the Rector, please contact one of the churchwardens for your church.
Once children are old enough to make their own promises, or once baptised adults are ready, they can be confirmed into the church. The service is rather like a baptism but conducted by a Bishop rather than a parish priest. The promises are made after a period of education and discussion that checks whether the individual is ready to affirm their faith in front of witnesses. https://www.churchofengland.org/life-events/confirmations/confirmation-faqs
The bishop will generally hold a confirmation service annually close to or in our benefice. It will normally be a separate service rather than part of the normal Sunday worship and with many candidates and their families there, it is a really joyful celebration of our faith.
Weddings / blessings / banns
We are blessed with three beautiful churches, each in a rural setting and are happy to discuss wedding or blessing plans. There are a few rules and the Rector is best placed to explain these but you can answer most questions by working through some of the headings on the following excellent website https://www.yourchurchwedding.org.
We also are asked to read “Banns of marriage” for people from our parishes who are being married elsewhere. The website link has a section on that subject too which is worth reading before you contact the Rector. You can contact the Rector by email on Rector@ybsbenefice.org.uk.
Funeral and memorial services and burial of remains or of ashes.
Each of us respond differently to the loss of a loved one. There are some excellent resources on the following website https://www.churchofengland.org/life-events/funerals that give advice and explain how we can help you.
Both Begbroke and Shipton are still open for burials and internment of ashes.
Yarnton has a parish burial ground a few minutes from the church.
Please contact the Rector by email on Rector@ybsbenefice.org.uk for more information, or a churchwarden in the Rector’s absence.
Gravestones and memorials
These can be a heartfelt expression of love for a dear one but there are some guidelines and rules designed to keep the balance between expression and order. The churchyard regulations are here
In St Michael's Begbroke we have a simple summary of the memorial sizes and materials that may be helpful. (View Conditions PDF)
There is a form to fill in and a small fee to pay when adding or modifying a gravestone or monument. The form is at the end of the churchyard regulations mentioned above and the current fees are here