Rites of Passage
Child Blessings and Namings
Depending on personal preference, Unitarians have many different names for the celebration of new life - baptism, child dedication, or naming and blessing. Whatever the ceremony is called, it is a service of welcome to the new life, celebrating the continuing miracle and wonder of life, dedicating the parents (and godparents, if applicable) to the spiritual nurture of their child, and introducing the child to the wider community. Parents are not expected to make theological declarations, or to commit their child to a particular system of belief. Such services are usually conducted either as an integral part of a Sunday service, or at another time, according to the wishes of the parents and the minister.
The Meeting House is registered for the celebration of marriages. Apart from the inclusion of the two legal requirements, Unitarian weddings are designed to suit the circumstances of the couple, who are invited to be as involved as they wish in the design of their service so that their wedding accurately and honestly reflects their theological beliefs, personal circumstances and aspirations for marriage. Unitarians do not discriminate against people who are divorced, of different faith or none. Nor for any other reason.
Same Sex Marriages and Blessings
Sevenoaks Unitarians are pleased to confirm we are now licensed to conduct weddings for same-sex couples, in support of our continued drive for equality and fairness in society.
The Minister at Bessels Green is pleased to offer funerals and memorial services for those who want a dignified ceremony which does not impose or assume any particular theological position on the part of the deceased. Services are appreciations of the life of the deceased, and an acknowledgement of the human experience of loss and bereavement. Services can be held in the Meeting House, a local crematorium or cemetery, or other agreed location.