Jon’s naming ceremony

The Ceremony

On Saturday 27th October 2001 between 3 and 7 pm we welcomed Jon into the world with a LifeRites ceremony at The Manhattan Suite, Croydon. The ceremony was performed by Lum’Rhin Dharvu.


Good afternoon everyone and, on behalf of Georgina and Rob, a warm welcome to you all for this, JONATHAN ALEXANDER ALLEN’S Naming Ceremony.

For those of you who have not attended an event of this kind before there is a brief explanation printed on the inside of your invitations. However, a Naming Ceremony is, simply put, a personal way of introducing the world to JONATHAN ALEXANDER and vice versa.

You will hear "Promises" given by JONATHAN ALEXANDER’S parents, grandparents and sponsors; listen to readings and poems in addition to your witnessing JON’S Anointing & Blessing.

There is also a "Book of Welcome" which Georgina and Rob would be delighted if you would sign for JON over the course of this celebration.

Opening Reading

From ‘The Prophet’ – Kahlil Gibran
Read by Kathy Allen

And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said; Speak to us of Children.
And he said:
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love, but not your thoughts;
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of to-morrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.

The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, as He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the Archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.

Promises to Jonathan Alexander from his Grandparents

We, your grandparents, collectively and individually promise to:

  • Show you JON, the model railway and teach you how to run the trains.
  • Be there for you as long as we can and to give you the best that we can.
  • Love you unreservedly and uncritically.
  • Spoil you rotten when we have the opportunity.
  • Encourage within you an appreciation of textures, colours and the countryside.
  • Teach you to be kind and considerate of other people.
  • Be your best friends.

Response This we promise.

First Rose cast into Blessing Bowl


‘The Paint Box’ – E.V.Rieu
Read by Candi Trauner

‘Cobalt and umber and ultramarine,
Ivory black and emerald green –
What shall I paint to give pleasure to you?’
‘Paint for me somebody utterly new.’

‘I have painted you tigers in crimson and white.’
‘The colours were good and you painted aright.’
‘I have painted the cook and a camel in blue
And a panther in purple.’ ‘You painted them true.

Now mix me a colour that nobody knows,
And paint me a country where nobody goes,
And put in it people a little like you,
Watching a unicorn drinking the dew.’

Promises to Jonathan Alexander from his Sponsors

We, your Sponsors, collectively and individually promise to:

  • Be a door that is always open and an ear that is always listening.
  • Encourage you in an appreciation of a good bottle of red.
  • Teach you to share other’s toys, joys and woes.
  • Encourage you to seek out new gadgets and new technology.
  • Be there for you when you don’t think your parents are.
  • Teach you to be tolerant and understanding.
  • Encourage you in whatever you want to do with your life.
  • Always be a friend to you.
  • Teach you honesty: the importance of being honest with others, and more importantly with one’s self.
  • Teach you the ability to laugh at everything, most especially one’s self. After all, it’s not worth taking life so seriously when you won’t get out of it alive.
  • Teach you balance: to understand that everything has a place in life. Anger, love, sorrow, joy, integrity. Teach you how to reconcile the good and the bad in life and transcend it.
  • To be a support and a friend away from home should you need it & to share with you the wild beauty of Africa.

Response This we promise.

Second Rose cast into Blessing Bowl

Promises to Jonathan Alexander from his Parents

We, your parents, promise to:

  • Respect you JON, as an individual, and to teach you to respect others and yourself.
  • Help you find your own path through life.
  • Meet your physical and emotional needs.
  • Love you unconditionally.
  • Try to give you the best we can without spoiling you.
  • Help you to be at ease with computers and new technology, to teach you how to type your name before you can write it.
  • To teach you to appreciate the world around you and to encourage you to retain a childlike wonder throughout life.

Response This we promise.

Third Rose cast into Blessing Bowl

Anointing & Blessing

As it was,
As it is,
As it shall be
O Thou Triune
Of Grace!
With the ebb
With the flow,
O Thou Triune
Of Grace!
With the ebb
With the flow.

Closing Poem

And now with something (perhaps!) from JONATHAN ALEXANDER’S point of view:

‘There’s Money in Mother & Father’ – Morris Bishop
Read by Mitchell Quinn

The lamp burns long in the cottage,
The light shines late in the shop,
Their beams disclosing the writers composing
Memories of Mom and Pop.

Oh don’t write a book about Father!
Don’t write a book about Dad!
Better not bother to tell how Father
Went so amusingly mad.
Better pass over the evening Father got locked in the zoo –
For your infant son has possibly begun
A funny little book about you.

The author broods in his study,
The housewife dreams in her flat:
Since Mommer and Popper were most improper,
There ought to be a book in that.

But don’t write a book about Mother!
Don’t write a book about Mum!
We all know Mumsy was vague and clumsy,
Dithering, drunken and dumb.

There may be money in Mother,
And possibly a movie, too –
But some little mite is learning to write
To write a little book about you.

In Closing

And now everyone, before you all enjoy the rest of this joyful celebration (not forgetting, of course, to sign the "Book of Welcome" if you have not already done so) please put your hands together and show your appreciation for JONATHAN ALEXANDER ALLEN.