Hundreds gather for open air baptisms on Easter Sunday in Chichester

The Rev. Mark Payne (left) and Youth Leader Darren Lewis baptise one of four canadidates with total immersion outside St. Pancras Church, Chichester. Chris Hatton
The Rev. Mark Payne (left) and Youth Leader Darren Lewis baptise one of four canadidates with total immersion outside St. Pancras Church, Chichester. Chris Hatton

Hundreds of people gathered outside for a public baptism service on Easter Sunday in Chichester’s Church Square.

A long-standing Christian tradition is to hold baptisms, a declaration of faith, on Easter Sunday to celebrate believers sharing in Jesus’ resurrection.

Baptisms at St Pancras' Church, Chichester on Easter Sunday April 21 2019

Baptisms at St Pancras' Church, Chichester on Easter Sunday April 21 2019

The square outside St Pancras church was packed out for the open air service, which saw four members baptised in a splash pool, two by full immersion.

In glorious sunshine, the baptisms were accompanied with worship songs and testimonies from the candidates and followed by a celebratory glass of Prosecco and mini Easter Eggs.

Rev Mark Payne conducted the baptisms assisted by youth minister Darren Lewis.

Rev Payne said: “We think around 200 people attended the service in the square, with neighbours in flats overlooking the square watching from their balconies.

“We filled Church Square for the Baptisms of James Oldman, James Allman, Sarah Bayley and Jay Jay Bayley. It was a wonderful and joyous Easter Sunday.”