Christening Date Vs. Baptism Date

Started by Private User on Thursday, September 1, 2011


Showing all 29 posts
Private User
9/1/2011 at 9:28 AM

Here is why I don't want to treat a baptism date and a christening date as the same thing:

1. If I don't have a birth date and all I have is documentation of a christening, then I know it occurred around infancy and I will be able to know his age in any given time frame.

2. A baptism can occur at any age; infant, child, or adult. So I don't think it wise to associate a baptism with a birth date.

The last baptism record I found threw me for a loop. I was looking for the baptism of a baby and I discovered that he was baptized 1759 in London at age 35! At least this gives me a clue that his siblings were probably not baptized as infants either when I go looking for documentation.

If the original document is dubbed "Christening", I will just put it in the timeline and record a circa for the birth.

If the original document is dubbed "baptism", I will enter as baptism and add the source document.

Private User
9/1/2011 at 9:35 AM

Good thing you are not looking at Quakers, they don`t baptise or christen.

9/1/2011 at 9:59 AM


I agree with you.

From our other discussion <grin> we learned how relevant the baptism is for dating d.o.b. In Europe, and how confusing (and possibly irrelevant, but useful) in Colonial America.

I do like the way the field is folded in the Basics tab. Should we request an enhancement?

Maybe an easy way is christening OR baptism check box.

9/1/2011 at 10:00 AM

In other words I'm suggesting the other way around; that baptism be the timeline event, and christening the optional birth associated event.

9/1/2011 at 2:54 PM

I think your approach, Leslie Ann, is a good one. While there are many different "meanings" associated with baptisms and christening, they are essentially just events in a person's life. While a number of 'traditions' associate christening with infants, that is not necessarily the case.

In the absence of information about other events (e.g.: key ones, such as birth & death!), they can at least "inform" one as to the possibilities -- or impossibilities -- of other missing or conflicting information about a person.

Private User
9/1/2011 at 3:39 PM

Private User
Leslie Ann Smedley
Erica Isabel Howton, Volunteer Curator
Dan Cornett
The idea of ​​using Time Line is very useful
I'm thinking this is a problem in leaving the place where the square
Baptism Information Add mark, which must be solved

9/1/2011 at 4:35 PM

The thing about the baptism field currently is that often the only record for a d.o.b., particularly in Europe with their good church records, many which have been microfilmed.

So while I see it as event, it really can be critical in dating the profile, and needs the prominent slot on the face of the profile.

9/1/2011 at 5:13 PM

I would not move baptism to an event but keep it where it is for ancestors of Americans in great numbers, we have baptism and not birth dates. Yes, sometimes it's clear that the baptism is done well after birth, but it's helpful in 85% of the cases I'd say. In the other 15%, they were baptized as adults (very small number) or baptised when their parents were admitted to the church. At least in the towns I've looked at.

9/1/2011 at 6:27 PM

It's the ambiguity between the words baptism and christening that Justin explained.

I'd actually like to call it "naming ceremony."

9/2/2011 at 1:18 AM

maybe we need a field that means different events for different religion.
Jews and Muslim don't baptize , Jew have circumcision
I think we need a dynamic field that changes it's name and meaning according to profile's religion
BTW - we should have a date for religion change (Muhamad Alli or Kat Stevens)

Private User
9/2/2011 at 1:38 AM

We don't need anything from Geni - what we need is that people start learning how to add whatever event they want by discovering the big blue button named [Add a New Event] on a profile and name the event whatever they want.

The reason is that on an international site you cannot satisfy everyone and some predefined fields might even insult people if they are bound to some specific religious event (baptism is in the borderline). A christening field would probably insult most Muslims seeing the field on their family profiles.

May be the [Add a New Event] should get a more prominent place on a profile an not all the way to the right of the Timeline tab?

9/2/2011 at 3:18 AM

Bjorn, I cannot agree with this time.
timeline events are "generic events" like family reunion, party or trip.
events that have real genealogical meaning should be recorded at the right place,

Private User
9/2/2011 at 4:34 AM

Take a closer look on a profiles timeline the next time.

9/2/2011 at 5:18 AM

@Bjorn: I just did ... and perhaps what is needed to make adding Timeline events more helpful is to be able to choose some "event types" based on current GEDCOM-defined events. That would allow them to be exchanged with other genealogical programs more consistently.

Of course, the event types should not be constrained to only pre-defined ones!

The 'predefined' events could even include relevant fields unique to those types of events. For example, with Baptisms or Christening the event fields could include a place to define parents and God-parents (multiples!) and linking them to existing Geni profiles (if they exist).

9/2/2011 at 5:25 AM

... more thoughts ...

I'm not implying that all existing "genealogical events" such as birth, death, etc. be made generic, albeit pre-defined, "events" on the timeline. Just that by having 'pre-defined' event templates the data can become more consistent over time. Then the "genealogical debate" can be about which additional events would be useful to become "standard" in the exchange of information between software programs (e.g.: added to GEDCOM standards).

Private User
9/2/2011 at 6:08 AM

Agree that a set of GEDCOM related events could be in an optional predefined pull-down menu.

Take a closer look again on a Baptism event on a profile, - which you by the way can rename to Christening. Click on it in the timeline - You can add more people to it, write a description, add documents, photos (like a photo of the gravestone for the burial event) and so on. - except that I wonder who would add videos and photos to the "death of" events ;-)

Be aware that there are TWO different edit links when viewing an event. One to the upper right for Event Details where you add people, location, date and so on, and one for the About text.

Private User
9/2/2011 at 7:46 AM

I agree with Bjorn. We don't really need Geni to do anything, adding the Christening event to the timeline, so I can attach the proper document will work just fine. However it would be nice if the "Add a New Event" button was on the face of the profile.

My main concern was just being able to document and source the event properly. I don't want to add a Christening document to a baptism event, and I should have already known to do it with the timeline, but I had a brain fart.

And I just want to note that the timeline is important because it's the key to telling one's story. I'm not just connecting dots here, I want to know everything I can about an ancestor.

9/2/2011 at 8:41 AM

I agree with Dan and Leslie
data exchange is important as well as usability of adding the data itself.
predefined event type along with "other:" is a big improvement.

9/2/2011 at 9:09 AM

A couple of simple but doable ideas from this discussion.

- add event to timeline button made more prominent
- some pre defined timeline events available

I never mind having a drop down as long as there's free text available too.

In the meantime I'm using the baptism field interchangeably with to help date of birth calculation and definition.

Private User
9/2/2011 at 10:30 AM

I will continue using the baptism field. As I said before all the documents I have seen are for the Catholic Church & say baptism & never christening. These baptisms are frequently done the same day as the birth or within the first few weeks after the birth.

9/2/2011 at 10:51 AM

FYI: I just put in a feature request to help.geni for pre-defined (GEDCOM) timeline events.

9/2/2011 at 11:01 AM

Can you post the link here?

Private User
9/2/2011 at 11:59 AM

Private User, using the baptism field is ok if you just want to enter the date and location, but if you want to add documentation to the event and add/edit people, documentation and information to the event you have to edit the timeline event anyhow, so getting used to it is a good idea.

You can see the baptism field in edit profile, as other items, just as a shortcut/simple way to add events to the timeline.

9/2/2011 at 12:05 PM

Bjorn I really like the idea of making an add event button more prominent, as that encourages detail and documentation for the timeline.

Private User
9/2/2011 at 12:40 PM

That require that the Timeline is in a more prominent place too, but moving the big blue button to the same column as the timeline list would make it more intuitive that it is an option for the timeline. Michelle Elena Kempner?

9/2/2011 at 12:47 PM

We are planning something like that in the next week or two as part of a design refresh so stay tuned...

Private User
9/2/2011 at 1:22 PM

Thanks!, - The edit event link does not have a logical location either....

9/3/2011 at 7:43 AM
9/3/2011 at 9:04 AM

Done. Thanks, Dan.

Showing all 29 posts

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