Christening Invitation Etiquette
Christening invitations are the first impression your guests will receive, so it is very important you are aware of and follow the proper invitation etiquette guidelines. Most Christening ceremonies occur very close to the actual birth of the child. Preparing your Christening invitations in advance is a good way to save yourself a lot of unnecessary stress. Follow these simple invitation etiquette guidelines and ideas to ensure that you make the right first impression.
Christening Invitation and Ceremony Timing
Most Christening ceremonies occur between 1-6 months after the child is born. This is because a Christening is traditionally when a child receives his or her name. Occasionally, due to potential health issues with the mother or baby, this timeframe can be extended. Other reasons for delay could be due to the fact that family or friends might not be able to attend otherwise.
Christening invitations should be sent out at least 3-4 weeks prior to the actual service or ceremony. This will allow guests plenty of time to save the date and reschedule any prior commitments. It will also allow sufficient time to prepare any gifts, speeches, or other arrangements that need to be made.
Who Gets Invited to Your Child’s Christening
Baby Christenings can be both a very private and public event. Most of the times the main attendees consist of close friends and family members. However it is not uncommon to invite congregation members or others affiliated with your church. Depending on your own preferences you can either have a small, intimate ceremony, or a large party. Typically the child’s parents will send out christening invitations, however sometimes that honor is reserves for the infant’s Godparents.
What to Include On Your Christening Invitations
Christening invitations are commonly opened with a bible verse, poem, or greeting. The child’s name should be prominently featured near the top of the invitation or underneath the greeting. It is customary to include the name of the church or location that the Christening ceremony is going to be held. Due to the fact that many guests attending a Christening may be from out of town, it is suggested that the full address of the location be included on the invitations. If more specific driving directions are needed, do not add these to the Christening invitation. Instead, enclose the directions in the invitation envelope on a separate piece of paper. If a reception is going to be held after the services, this should be included on the invitation. If directions are enclosed, there is no need to repeat them on the actual invitations. RSVP requests can be added at the bottom of the card if required, along with any contact information or accompanying christening response cards. If for any reason you feel that your guests might not be aware, it is not impolite to add a reminder that proper dress is required (i.e. Sunday Clothes).
Invitation Wording and Grammar
Christening invitations may be either formal or informal; it’s a matter of preference. If a more formal tone is preferred, do not use abbreviations. This applies to the date, time, and address as well. It is permitted to omit the year, due to the relative proximity between the event or services and the time the invitations are received.
Christening invitation etiquette is not as difficult as it sounds. Just remember to consider the mood of your Christening, the guests that will be attending, and the atmosphere of the reception. If you incorporate these ideas along with your own personal style and preferences, you can never go wrong!