I was brought up Church of England, my junior school was a really positive experience from a Christian point of view, we used to have Chapel on a Friday and lessons were very much praising God for what we have.
Rich is really supportive of Riley and me getting involved in a church, he wants Riley to experience Christianity so she can make up her own mind what she believes.
Since then religion has become a bit daunting for me. I see God as a force to do good... we went to our local CofE church a few weeks back, I didn't feel very included and then they all had tea and didn't offer me one, I know it sounds petty and silly but who does that? I just didn't feel welcome.
We have also choosen 3people we want to be key people in her life... Dan and Nikki (Rich's brother and my sister who happen to also be a couple!) who would bring Riley up if anything happened to us and Emma who helped deliver her and has been my friend since we were 2. However Nikki and Dan don't believe... when I explained this to the people at the church when they asked me about Christening her, they said to choose other people... who else do we choose, I know if Nikki and Dan brought up Riley they would encourage her involvement in church as they know that's what I want... but in the church's eyes that isn't enough...
So it got me thinking, what do I want for Riley, I want her to experience Christianity in a positive way... why is Christening important? Well it's not important to me, I came to realise it's only important to other people and at the end of the day we're bringing up Riley...
Why do I mention Christening in this light, well we've sort of fallen into a fellowship community church we've been to a couple of Sundays now, it was so upbeat, positive and relaxed, they are all about being a family and believing in god to do positive things in the community, they run lots of youth groups and generally try to make a difference in society... but they don't do Christenings they do declarations to God, which are much less formal, more of a promise that the church will be there for them, but gives the child a chance to make there own mind up.
But we do want these key people in her life to be somehow highlighted, so we've been looking into naming ceremonies. They look great, you can personalise them so add your own songs, poems and readings. You can chose people to be "important people" and can add tributes to people who can't be there so would be great to mention our grandads who died around when Riley was born...
We don't want to upset anyone but to me this plan makes sense and meets all the things we want for Riley :)
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