Alice baptised in the Brock

Alice Hardman gets ready to be submerged in the River Brock
Alice Hardman gets ready to be submerged in the River Brock
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Alice Hardman has a very special reason for remembering Holy Week 2014.

On the Tuesday before Easter she took a momentous step on her own faith journey by being baptised in front of 90 friends and family.

But it was no ordinary baptism. The teenager chose a full immersion baptism in the River Brock.

The 16-year-old, from Whitechapel, explained that she had decided she was going to let faith have more of an influence in her life and wanted to share that commitment.

She explained: “I had just moved from high school to sixth form and that was a big change socially and emotionally.

Jesus was baptised as he started his ministry, so I thought ‘Yes, that’s me – I’ll do that, too’.”

Keen also to show her friends that church is about more than a building, she decided the baptism, carried out by youth pastor John Kirby and John Field, should take place in a river, like 
Jesus’s baptism, and be at one of her favourite places – Walmsley Bridge on the River Brock.

By having the ceremony on a Tuesday she says she wanted to demonstrate that faith and church is “all week round, not just a Sunday.”

“I put an invite on Facebook and I just kept telling people about it . I suppose it’s me professing my faith – that’s a good thing,” she said.

She added that her church, Inglewhite Congregational Church, carries out dedications for infants, with church members choosing to be baptised as adults if they so wish.

Alice, who attended Archbishop Temple School, Fulwood, before starting A-level studies at Lancaster Girls’ Grammar, hopes to go on and take a nursing degree and work as a health visitor.

She teaches swimming on Saturdays for Glover’s Swim School and also finds time to help at Inglewhite Youth Club and enjoys interpretive dance.

As for her very special day, she said: “I feel really good about it. I had such a good time.

“It’s so nice to see how far I’ve come and I’m really excited about what I can do in the future. I’ll play it by ear with God and see if he has any exciting plans.

“ I wasn’t really expecting a big fuss. But then a big fuss has been made!”