Our New Baby Dedication Celebration

We have traditionally incorporated baby dedication in our Sunday morning services, which basically resulted in a baby parade and a quick repeating of promises of dedication.  It was ok, but it wasn’t the best for our parents.  In fact, when we were rushing to get to our second daughter’s dedication, we were in such a hurry that we almost left her in her carrier in the kitchen.

We wanted to be more intentional about beginning this partnership with families and providing a quality event for this first milestone in the baby’s life.

So, we stole lots of ideas from Kenny Conley and Kendra Flemming, two of my favorite peeps to steal ideas from.  We also used a lot of the materials provided in ReThink’s Baby Dedication material.

Here’s what we did:

–  Parents chose between one of two dedication orientations to attend.  I love this because I got to really connect with families, most of whom I had never met before. We cast the vision for our family ministry and gave instructions for the dedication.

–  We set the event for 4:00 on Sunday afternoon.  We actually had it at our student building so that we didn’t have to transition the worship center and so that we could have a smaller environment.

–  We did a little worship, our pastor gave a message of encouragement, families shared with each other what they dreamed for this child, and prayer partners from our ministry led each family in prayer.  Then our pastor came back to lead in dedication vows.

–  We had very yummy cake and snacks.  We also had a photographer who took family pictures.

Here’s what I loved:

–  Loved connecting with the families.  We are also big on helping people take “next steps”.   Through the orientations I identified 8 families who were not connected anywhere else.  I’m now going to stalk them for a parenting class I will do with the intent of connecting them.

–  Loved seeing families praying together for these little ones.  Grandpas were crying.  Good stuff.

–  Loved taking time to worship the God who gave us these babies.

–  Loved seeing our preschool leadership team, baby class small group leaders, and staff partner with parents to pray for them.  I had a baby teacher who was “honored” that he was invited.  I was honored he would come!!!

Things to fix:

–  Who would have thought that there are no changing tables in the student ministry building? 🙂

–  We needed kleenex.  I underestimated the emotions of the moment.

–  Because of space, we might need to reconsider our venue.

I’m sure there were more, but overall I am so extremely proud of our preschool team for pulling this off.  They did an absolutely incredible job!!!

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