Child/Baby Dedications are an opportunity for New Garden Friends Meeting to celebrate the children of our community. When a child or baby is dedicated, the Meeting promises to help support the family and to help love and care for that child.
Q: Do we have to be members to have our baby/child dedication?
A: No, attenders are also welcome to have their baby/child dedicated at New Garden.
Q: Are we joining the Meeting when we have our baby/child dedicated?
A: No, our membership process is separate from baby/child dedications. Baby/child dedications are simply an opportunity for our community to celebrate our youngest Friends and express our love and support for families.
Q: Are we making religious promises when we dedicate our baby/child?
A: Baby/child dedications offer families an opportunity to express how they will try to raise their child using Quaker values of peace, equality, integrity, simplicity, community, and care for the environment. There is no other commitment that is asked of the family. New Garden Friends Meeting will promise during the dedication to support and love the family and child.
Q: Our family has adopted an older child. Can we have our child dedicated?
A: Yes! We joyfully celebrate all families and children at New Garden.
Q: What if we have already had our child/baby baptized, dedicated, or otherwise celebrated, in a different faith community?
A: We will joyfully dedicate your child/baby at New Garden Friends Meeting even if they have already been celebrated in another faith community.
Q: When do child/baby dedications take place?
A: Baby/child dedications take place during our semi-programmed worship at 11am. They historically have taken place on Mother’s Day and on Father’s Day, but they can happen on any Sunday that is convenient for the family.
Q: Do we need to dress up for child/baby dedications?
A: No, but some families choose to dress up (it is a great opportunity to take some family photos) but other families do not. You are also welcome to invite extended family or friends to come and be part of the celebration.
Q: What does a baby/child dedication look like? What happens?
A: The pastoral minister will ask the family if they will raise their child with Quaker values (peace, equality, integrity, etc.) and then will ask the Meeting if they promise to love and support the child. The pastoral minister will then walk the child throughout the worship room and introduce the child to the Meeting. Each family receives a flower and dedication certificate to celebrate the moment.
Q: Will my family be welcomed at New Garden?
A: Yes! We enthusiastically welcome all kinds of families and children in our Meeting. We are joyfully welcoming of single parent families, multiracial families, grandparents who are parenting full time, interfaith families, families with adopted or foster children, gay couples and gender-nonconforming or trans children and children with disabilities. You are welcome at New Garden Friends Meeting.
Q: Who should I contact about having my child/baby dedicated?