Baptism and Confirmation
Denmark is a largely Christian, protestant society with approximately 60% of all children born in Denmark being baptised into the Danish church, Folkekirken.
All children born in Denmark must be officially named within the first 6 months of birth. This can either happen in church by baptism or on Borger.dk. Most children are under the age of 1 when they are baptised. At a baptism, adult representatives chosen by the child's parents agree to welcome the child into the faith and to make sure the child is brought up in the Christian faith.
In Year 7 of the Danish schooling system, many children prepare for their confirmation. Religious studies are taught from Year 1, and in Year 7, students have opportunity to “gå til præst” - which translates into “go to priest”.
With their classmates, they have weekly sessions at the local church with the minister preparing them for confirming the faith they were baptised into as babies. This year however, this tradition has been interrupted by the covid-19 crisis, but normally confirmations take place in the spring.
There is a ceremonial procedure at the church where the confirmands accept their faith. Afterwards, a family gathering takes place to celebrate this traditionally important step towards adulthood. Food and drinks are enjoyed, speeches held, presents given - and the confirmand shows their blossoming adult status by thanking their parents for the festivities in a speech or a song they have written themselves.
The first coming Monday, called “Blue Monday”, the confirmands have a day off school to have a day of fun in town with their peers. They will do various activities, eat out, perhaps spend some of the money given to them on their big day; and in the evening, Odense Kommune throws them a party.
Tuesday morning, it’s back to school again! For many youngsters, this is a very exciting event which they prepare for and look forward to for years.