The Baptism of babies and small children in the Parishes of Henham, Elsenham and Ugley.

The process is:

    • You will be visited for an initial chat

    • You will be asked to start attending church for a couple of months so as you can mix with Christians and get to know the members of your local church

    • As part of the process of preparing for Baptism, we offer a service of Thanksgiving for the Gift of a Child

    • You will be asked to participate in a preparation course

    • At the end of the course, you will be asked if you wish to proceed to baptism in which case a date for the service can be booked

The baptism (Christening) of a child is a joyful but serious undertaking. Parents and godparents make promises before God in church to raise the child as a Christian. All the children of the parishes of Henham, Elsenham & Ugley are welcome for baptism and the church seeks to introduce the parents sufficiently well to the Christian Faith so as they will understand the commitment they are making before having their child baptised. The hope and prayer is always that parents themselves will be truly converted to Christ before committing their child to believing in Him and following Him.

The important thing is for you to weigh carefully if committing your child to follow and serve Christ is what you really want for them. That takes time to explore – and it is a great thing to explore! Because of this please do not apply for baptism with a date for it already in mind. The Church understands how important special dates can be for people and how important it is to have all the family and friends together. But in baptism what is most important is obeying the command of Christ to make disciples for him. There are a great many other occasions you can use for a family get-together!

Jesus said: “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you”.

Matthew 28: 19 – 20.

Weddings - getting married in church

A wedding is a very exciting and joyful occasion – sometimes for the groom as well!

Where ever you get married the ‘big day’ will be very special. If you want to get married in church there are some particular points to bear in mind. Getting married in church involves more than having the ceremony in a beautiful and traditional venue. Christians have very clear and long-held beliefs about marriage and the vicar will want to talk with you about your reasons for wanting to get married and he will require you to attend a four-part preparation course which he runs. The vicar has to be satisfied that he can in all conscience carry out the ceremony and is under no legal obligation to do so if he thinks the marriage would be wrong.

The present vicar holds firmly to the Church’s teaching that marriage is for life (‘till death us do part’) between one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others and that only within the bonds of matrimony can the sexual act be truly free and safe for the purpose God intended. The vicar will seek to impress upon you the idea that a wedding in church is very much about celebrating, embracing and upholding traditional Christian beliefs.

As well as these pastoral concerns the vicar will also have to talk you through the legal requirements which you have to meet. You will need a qualifying connection with the church where you wish to marry. Briefly these are:

    • you were baptised or confirmed in the parish

    • you have or have had your usual place of residence in the parish or habitually attended public worship in the parish for a period of at least six months

    • during your lifetime one of your parents has had or has their usual place of residence in the parish or habitually attended public worship in the parish for a period of at least six months

    • one of your parents or grandparents was married in the church

There are other important legal formalities which the vicar will need to discuss with you.

Always talk to the vicar first before deciding on a date for your wedding! Never ‘book the vicar and church’ to fit in with the date of the reception! More people are trying to do things this way round and it often leads to disappointment. Do things properly from the start; the process of getting married in church begins with a meeting with the vicar.

The present vicar finds it very difficult to consent to the remarriage of divorced persons who have a previous partner still living. But this should not deter you from making enquiries as it is good to talk through such matters face to face. In some cases the vicar is pleased to offer a service of ‘Prayer and Dedication after a Civil Marriage’ as a pastoral way forward for those who seek the help and guidance of the church in remarrying.


Please contact the Church Office and we will do all we can to accommodate your requirements.


Please be assured that members oft he church are available to visit people at home or in hospital for prayer. If you or someone you know are in need of ministry then contact the Church Office

Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord (James 5:14).

For further information ...