Non-religious Baptism Gift

Updated on July 19, 2011
C.M. asks from Bartlett, IL
16 answers

My cousin is getting baptized and we've been specifically told by the grandma of the baby not to get a religious gift because it won't be appreciated or used.

Now I know my cousins are NOT religious in any way. They do not attend church ever and haven't since they lived with their parents. They don't even attend on holidays, like Christmas. I know what the grandma is saying, if I were to buy a Bible or a cross necklace or some kind of cross hanging for the baby's room it would not be used or appreciated. I suggested a saving's bond but I was told the parents aren't organized enough to keep track of it until it matures so it would be like throwing my money away.

I just got a photo album. I didn't feel like clothes or toys were appropriate. I wanted to give a CD of religious songs for children but I was told that it wouldn't ever be used. It seems hypocritical to me to baptize a child you don't intend to raise in the church (and they are baptizing the child in a local church that neither one of them belongs to). Is that enough of a gift??

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So What Happened?

Thanks everyone! I gave a nice photo album and I included some pictures I had inside. I know my cousins baptized because that's what you're "supposed to do." I doubt either one of them will set foot in a church again unless someone else is getting married! But it's not my business, and maybe the baby will decide for himself if he wants to know God.

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answers from Las Vegas on

I think it's kinda rude to tell people what kind of gift will be appreciated or not... Therefore, an album sounds just fine.

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1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

That is bizarre. I think you're gift idea is great. They are doing a religious ceremony and want no religious gifts...hmmm...

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answers from Kansas City on they don't go to church, couldn't care less, are so irresponsible they couldn't even keep track of a savings bond for their child, but they're baptizing their baby and want presents? i'm not sure i'd even go at this point.

you are being more than generous. to even ask for the gifts not to be religious is tacky and rude. honestly..i would keep the photo album (or give it to someone else) and keep my happy bum at my own church that morning.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I think these gift-grabbers need a book about what Baptism is all about.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Buy a baptism card & pray for them.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Medford on

I suppose you can give them a small photo album, since we assume most people will take photos of their kids. But how strange, why are they doing the baptisum at all? Do they know that when you have a small child baptised it isnt about the child making the decision, but its the parents promising before God to raise that child in a Godly manner and have them attend church. I cant believe any pastor or priest, or clergy would agree to baptise a child without some previous talks with the parents. They have standards for who they will even marry in a church, and certainly they wont be willing to do this to people who dont attend or believe in the faith. Without faith, a baptisum isnt a baptisum, its just a bath.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

A photo album and.or a baptism picture frame is a nice gift. Maybe they're saying not to get religious gifts because they just want cash...that's a tacky way to try to get cash but cash or a gift card is an appropriate gift for a baptism.

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answers from Dallas on

I wonder if one of their Moms/Dads belongs to the church and they're doing it to please a parent? A photo album is lovely. You did fine.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

It seems, that Grandma, is displacing her attitudes of them, onto what gift 'you' should get or not.

Anyway, your album idea sounds nice.
That is neutral.

Baptizing a child is 'tradition' for some people. Or it is religious based.
Or cultural.
So be it.
It is not our place, to determine, who should get baptized or not... per that family's lifestyle or beliefs.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I think you should give whatever gift you deem appropriate for the occasion. I don't believe Grandma should be dictating what gifts can or should be given. If you want to give something religious, that is your choice. Just because Mom and Dad don't care for it, doesn't mean the child won't as he or she grows up.

That being said, I think there is a lot of judgment against these parents going on. I personally am not religious but I also baptised my children. It was something my mother felt very strongly about. I felt that if it would help her sleep better at night, then I would do it. The pastor is very well aware of my feelings and outlook that religion is something I will allow each of my children to explore for themselves as they grow up. In the mean time, I had them baptised in the Church I grew up in where my mother still attends. We received several religious gifts and they were very much appreciated and my kids have each and every one. I framed the baptismal napkins with crosses stitched on them and they are hanging in their rooms. We read the books whenever they want. If we had a CD, I would let them listen to it whenever they want. Just because parents are religious doesn't mean they aren't going to allow their children to experience anything God-related.

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answers from San Francisco on

I agree with you that it is strange if they are not into the faith. If they wanted a non religious cermony they could have chosen a naming cermony.
B. k

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answers from Chicago on

Cash or savings bond...always perfect for each and every gift.


answers from Raleigh on

I think it's plenty. I agree with you...if you are going to baptize your baby then you need to do it because you truly believe in what you are doing. It's sad that they are treating this day as just another excuse to get gifts for their little one...


answers from Chicago on

I am familiar with the 'act' of baptism despite not having a religious's like having an extravagent wedding in a beautiful church but not belonging to it or any other church - more like a rite of passage! Sorry - not anything to do with your question!!!!! So, thumbs up to the photo album - a new parent can't have enough of those.........maybe one with a cross on it :)



answers from Chicago on

I would still go with the savings bond. and keep it at your house. you can have it mailed to your house. when you purchase it you can have "pod" put on it as a secondary holder. and put the parents name or your own name. but keep it at your house till the child is old enough to use it. in our house that is 16 when they purchase their first cars.



answers from Chicago on

Everyone seems to be placing all sorts of judgement on this young family. If my Gma was always telling everyone what screw-ups we were I guess that would mess with my self-esteem and motivation too.
I'm more surprised that Grandma is dictating what kind of gifts the BABY should recieve. This is about the BABY, not the parents. If you buy a CD of religious children's songs, you don't know for sure that it will not get played. You're not buying for the parents, you are buying for the child. If you want to get the child a gift like a wall hanging or necklace do so. A gift is just that. A gift. From the heart and with love. What happens after that is up to the recipient. A photo album is also a lovely and practical gift - to put pictures of the occasion in etc.

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