Some of Our Web Enquiries
When we set up the web 5 years ago we didn't quite know what to expect. But we are currently recording about a thousand per month and although we don’t know who all the people are, or how serious was their “surfing”, there is much evidence that the site is filling a vital need as will be seen from the extracts below. We also have a world-wide audience! Enquiries have been received from Hawaii, Texas, Continental Europe, and Australia.
On the technical front, the vast majority of enquirers find the site quick to load and easily navigable (it should be with over 3000 Hyperlinks!). However if you do encounter problems please let me know.
All “Web masters” yearn to be number one on the various search engines. We actually haven’t done too badly and Google has had us at 1 or 2 on UK search for some time with the description “Wide and balanced variety of information and resources….”. When we receive enquiries we always seek to try and find out the source and it seems fairly evident that the main source is our official listing on the Church of England web-site and through the search engines; “Hello, I found your site after looking up infant baptism on the net”. We are also listed in the Church of England newspaper and Church Times as “resources”, but we have no direct knowledge of their effectiveness. In general, searches on the word “baptism theology” and “baptism practice” bring our site quite high on the list, but unfortunately “baptism” by itself is peopled by many people selling Christening gowns!
As time permits we will be publishing some of these questions and answers on the site, but the following will give you a flavour. It seems as though questions fall into a number of headings.
“Got your sight (sic) off my teacher.” “I am a student at …… and am preparing a seminar on the church’s response to miscarriages; specifically I am interested in the liturgy and rites offered to parents on the pre-natal death of their baby…..”. We were able to provide a wealth of information on the subject.
from the BBC for material in connection with their Songs of Praise programme on rites of passage. (Hopefully we were able to influence the direction of this a little bit from where it was going.
“Where can I get a BCP baptism service performed? Our marriage was BCP.”
“Your web-site is exactly what I have been looking for. The advice given about the Thanksgiving is exactly what I would like for my twins. Where can services like this be held?…..”
Information requested on initiation videos. (Here we hoped to be encouraging someone else to create a video!)
Not all response is complimentary!
“I can truly say it is with great misfortune that I came upon your web-site…. I have encountered nothing but bigoted hypocrisy from those representatives of the church to whom I have approached on this subject and from this very site….”. I hope our reply crossed a bridge or two!
Many questions come up under this heading. For example, change of name on baptism (very erudite subject!); who can baptise?; age of godparents; how can I get a copy of my baptism certificate. “My friend was baptised “somewhere in Wales”, can you help?”
“I have a four month old baby boy…. However I have been told my child cannot be baptised as I have not been baptised myself…….”
“Is there any truth to the “fact” that children in the 13th century in the UK were baptised with beer when the water wasn’t considered safe?” No good answer provided!
“Congratulations on your site, there is much of interest here. This is from a non-believer – (speaking frankly I regard you all as adherents of middle eastern death cult predicated on human sacrifice, the male high priest of which wear dresses and commit ritual cannibalism every Sunday – but let that pass) – you have produced a helpful site. Please do not reply.” (No comment needed here!)
Would you like to help? Before any reply is sent it is circulated to two or three committee members for balance and accuracy, but we would really welcome more on our “panel” to widen our knowledge base. Please let me know.