Godparents - The Orthodox Version
Nouna (Godmother) & Nouno (Godfather)
Here you are visiting your best friend's house. Both she and her spouse are excited to have you there. There is a special reason for you to be there today. She is pregnant with either a boy/girl. Her partying days with you are officially over. They sit down, offer you something to drink and eat, and then they ask you...
"We were wondering if you would like to be the godmother of our baby?"
Now a lot of times the couple will ask a fellow married couple to be the child's godparents because their kids can grow up together. So what if it's a single person? Well, the answer is, of course, you can have a single person. You can even have two single people (no setups please) when you choose the godparent. It's actually a big honor to be chosen to be a part of the child's life as a spiritual advisor as well.
How Should You Choose Your Godparent
I have some theories on choosing the right godparent/s for your child.
- Some people use a family member because, hey, you'll always have a relationship with that person. My Theory - I find it weird because you're already family to the child.
- Some ask their best friend because hey, what are best friends for? Stuck for life, as they say, when they become linked to the child. My Theory - Sounds about good.
- Other people might not want family or friends and choose a random person they met at church or who knows what. Someone who won't butt into their personal lives but will be there for the child because they just adore children. My Theory - No, thank you.
For my three children, I chose number two—friends. I had four single friends and a couple who had children of their own. I myself was single when I was chosen to become a godmother. I must say it is a great feeling in the world.
Here's a tip for the single people. DON'T PANIC. This will guide you for everything you need to understand about becoming a godparent and committing your life to this child. Trust and believe the moment that child looks into your eyes and holds your finger, you will never want to leave their side. Now, this is only for Orthodox Christians.
Time to Dip the Baby
Everyone has gathered in the church to witness the most wonderful blessing of all. You are so nervous that you don't drop the baby because let's face it—when have you held a baby? Mother and Father are standing by your side as they pass on their child to you in hopes you guide them in the right direction.You say the holy prayer and start walking up to the altar with this beautiful soul.
The baby gets stripped of their clothing and the priest holds out the baby while you smear oil all over their body. Religion states that the oily hands connect with the child. What a wonderfully sweet moment, until the priest dunks the baby in the water and then all hell breaks loose. You think the baby crying during delivery was bad—these babies definitely have pipes when they are being dunked. You feel so bad and the parents too but there's nothing you can do.
Then that crying child is placed in your arms wrapped in a towel and all that crying turns into smiling. You can't help but just make silly faces so the baby doesn't cry but that's it, you are officially a godparent standing in the Lord's sanctuary linked to another life. You are their road, their guidance, you are their second parent. So if Mom & Dad yell at them, they might come to you for support. Be prepared for anything.
Now that's over, don't forget to celebrate with everyone that witnessed this. Congratulations!
Relationships are so open now. There's no more sticking with your nationality because sometimes let's face it, you might find your other half believing something else. Now if you are Orthodox and they are Catholic but they truly want to convert just to be with you—there's a solution. If you read this page, it will help you. It's not about converting out of love but also love for the church. You still can have a godparent for that. That also is a very wonderful blessing to be a part of.
A Message from One Godparent to Another
Though there will be times you may not be able to be there physically for your godchild, always find a way to communicate with them to let them know you are always around for them. It's not about the presents but about the presence of them knowing you are a part of their lives always and will be there to guide them through the good and bad. I am a proud godmother and always look forward to hearing what adventures my godson takes.