Finally, I'm able to blog about the awesome baptism of Aidan last Sunday. Thank you to all our family and friends who attended Aidan's baptismal celebration either in Don Bosco or in Zhongnanhai. My wife and I were thrilled that at last, we were able to baptized Aidan into the Catholic faith and don't need to worry anymore. We were also thrilled that we were able to pull-off an awesome baptismal party in Zhongnanhai. Of course, my blog entry will not be complete without a personal review of the baptismal event and the lunch celebration in zhongnanhai. Special thanks to my brother Rommel for documenting the entire baptismal celebration!
>> More Pics: Aidan's Baptismal Celebration Photos (by Rommel Diaz)
Baptism @ Don Bosco Makati
Reasonable baptism registration. The costs of having a baptism in Don Bosco is P250 for the first pair of principal sponsors and P50/addl sponsor. So we have a total of 10 sponsors which costs us P650 all in all. They would already provide the candle needed during the ceremony. By the way, you only need to register 2 weeks in advance during office hours of the parish office.
Organized baptism rites. I was always impressed with how organized the sacraments are administered in Don Bosco Makati (confessions conducted every mass, wedding ceremonies have a coordinator designated by the church). First, they would require the parents and the sponsor to attend a baptism seminar one hour before the baptism. Secondly, there are people who would assist through out the baptismal rites and give ques to the parents on what to do, where to sit, when to stand. Third, photos and video taking is well organized despite the number of babies baptized all at the same time (about 8 I think). Lastly, you can feel the solemnity of the baptism even if a deacon is the one who administers the baptism.
- You need to identify two (2) principal sponsor who would be present in the baptism ceremony. Ideally, no proxy is allowed.
- Baptism in Don Bosco is held at 11am. The seminar starts at 10am but they would require you to be there 9.30am. Ideally, you should attend the 8.30am sunday mass in Don Bosco. BTW, there is a 12.15pm mass after the baptism, so you must be quick in taking group pictures after the ceremony.
- In Don Bosco, you get your baptismal certificate right after the ceremony! So make sure the names of the ninong & ninangs are correct and all other information.
- All you need to bring during the baptism would be his baptismal dress, camera/video camera and a hand fan. They normally turn off the aircon during the actual baptismal rite.
What I regret about having baptism in Don Bosco?
My only regret is that they don't allow special baptism where you request for a certain priest you want to baptize you son. In Aidan's baptism, it was a deacon who baptized him and we were not able to invite him to the reception.
Baptismal Celebration @ Zhongnanhai Chinese Bistro, Greenbelt 2
Recommended It was an awesome lunch celebration @ Zhongnanhai and we were very happy! Here are the reasons why:
Excellent Chinese Food! Almost of all my chinese friends, my wife's chinese family and even our expat who comes from China, Kitty, loved the food! The food was buffet and we never ran out of food and chef Andy make sure that we have enough for the guests. I'm glad that we had time to do a food tasting a week before because on the actual day, we were not able to properly eat because we are entertaining our guests. Based on the feedback, our family and friends liked soo much the steamed polangchai, one way peking duck, steamed garoupa, spinach soup, rice balls/buchi dessert, haagen daaz chocolate baptismal cake and the german wild lover tea! We achieved our objective to make the food very memorable! Thank you Joy and the ZNH Staff!
Excellent Party Ambiance. ZNH took care of decorating the place using blue and silver balloons. They even made an arc of balloons in the entrance which is very impressive. They made the tabletop menu with the picture of Aidan which is also consistent with the thank you cards with the same picture of Aidan and a free steamed polanchai/onion pancake/poached pear. They also have twisted balloons as centerpieces in the master table and buffet table which the kids enjoyed. The face painters were a hit with the kids. The only thing that we added was the photo frame gallery of Aidan in the entrance and the guest book which is a scrap book with Aidan's picture on every page. I really loved the setup and thank you to all our guests who appreciated it.
What I regret about having the reception in Zhongnanhai?
My only regret is that the place was small that some of our guest do not have tables and some are sharing a very small table for 2 but I could see 4 people using it. Also, I must admit that it was expensive (P600+/head). We were expecting a guest of only 100 people and we ended up having 120+ family and friends (according to ZNH it was 130+). Despite the fact that not all friends and family attended the affair. Given these learnings, Rache and I already are starting to plan an awesome Aidan's first bday and we agree on the following principles:
1). Invite close family and friends (approx. 150)
2). Memorable food, excellent theme, and unique party.
3). Plan ahead, evalutate options, and negotiate costs.