Hatches, Matches and Dispatches

The church is available to non-members as well as members for Baptisms, Weddings and Funerals.

Baptism

Baptism is available to all believers, infant or adult.  Adult candidates are asked to participate in a preparatory series of discussions with the minister. For adults, baptism may also include confirmation for membership in the Uniting Church if it is the candidate’s wish.

Infants are presented for baptism, supported by the faith of their parents, and no preparation is required except a discussion with the minister about the nature of baptism.

The baptism of either infant or adult is subject to the approval of the Church Council, although such approval is rarely, if ever, refused.  There is never a fee charged for baptism, though donations are always welcome. The rite of Baptism is almost always conducted as part of a normal Sunday worship service.  In rare cases, baptisms may be conducted privately, but members of the church must  be present.

Because the rite of baptism can be a significant, even momentous, experience, it is recommended that people postpone baptism until the candidates can make the choice for themselves. In such cases the infant can be brought before the church for a celebration of thanksgiving, thus providing for a family event similar to that of baptism, but reserving the formal baptism for later in life.

If candidates for baptism live in the ‘catchment’ area of another Uniting Church congregation, approval of that congregation’s minister must be sought before the baptism is conducted at Leopold. This is a matter of both ministerial ethics and common courtesy.

Weddings 

People may use the church for weddings with their own celebrant or may engage the church’s minister.  In the latter case, the minister will expect to meet with the couple on (usually) three occasions to get to know them, plan the service with them,  and help them explore what it might mean to be married to each other.

The hire of the church building is $!50, and the donation for the minister’s time is $250.

Funerals

Arrangements to use the church for funerals are usually made through funeral directors.  Refreshments after the funeral service usually are arranged privately or through the funeral director, also. The church UCAF members are pleased to serve the food and provide coffee and tea.