We are required by law to register the birth of a child at our local Register Office, but there is no legal obligation for a naming ceremony. Since 1998, however, the Register Office has offered a civil ceremony as an option, recognizing a need for a meaningful alternative to the traditional religious ceremony.
And it is for many of us a very natural thought, even a deep-seated need, to want to mark the arrival of a new baby or child into our lives as part of a shared celebration. After all, a child's arrival is one of the most exciting and life-changing events to occur in a family's story, and that is true whether the arrival is by birth or by adoption.
Where do you start in creating a ceremony of welcome into the family, and of community membership, and for the occasion to have integrity? This is where I can help. What I have to offer is an experience and level of service which goes well beyond what you can expect from the baby naming ceremony offered by your local Register Office.
Whether at home or in a party venue, in a community centre or village hall, on the beach or in a park, I can work with you to devise a rite of passage which feels fitting for you and your family.
Sometimes what you'll be looking for is a celebration, pure and simple. At other times it may feel a little more complicated than that in terms of the journey you've travelled, and perhaps a desire for that journey to be acknowledged in some way.
The starting point is always your story: - Has your experience been very straightforward? - Was conception complicated? - Was a surrogate involved? - Was it a difficult pregnancy? - Has there been post-natal depression? - Was there an earlier miscarriage? - How has life been with a previously born child? - What led you to decide to adopt? - How has the process of adoption been? - How well have you been supported?
Exploring your experiences of what got you to this momentous point in your life is key to understanding what you need the ceremony to be so that together we can create a ritual which is vested in personal meaning, and which is entirely individual and unique to you.