Today, in our churches we commonly practice “Baby Dedication” or really, parents dedicating themselves to raise a child for the Lord and entrusting the child to His care. In John Lelands’ day the practice was essentially the same, though they called it “Dry Christening.” Below, Elder Leland speaks about this act . . .
“Some of the preachers practice what is satirically called dry christening and others do not. The thing referred to is this: when a woman is safely delivered in child-bearing, and raised to health enough to go to meeting, she brings her child to the minister, who either takes it in his arms, or puts his hands upon it, and thanks God for his mercy, and invokes a blessing on the child; at which time the child is named.”