Purpose Of A Soul

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Sichuan, China

Purpose Of A Soul Reviews

WarrenRodwell WarrenRo…
50 reviews
Nov 02, 2007
The main intention of a christening or name-giving service is to recognize in an outer way the spiritual identity and purpose of a soul. This western ritual is ancient in origin; predating even the earliest traditions. Over the centuries, the manner in which the rite is administered and the interpretation of its meaning has undergone many changes, and still in these modern days it is practiced in many different forms.

Proud parents, Wesley and Bernadette Edmondson, with the assistance of their very dear friend, Phillip Lachlan, carefully selected a superb Sichuan spring day to publicly celebrate and welcome their beautiful new baby girl, Samantha, into not only the physical dimension of the world as we know it , but also the sanctum of their own inner beliefs and personal philosophies.Wesley had liaised with his beloved mother, Marjorie, back home in Canada, and under her kind guidance set out to select a suitable venue for this most auspicious of occasions in Chengdu; the birthplace of his gorgeous daughter just a few weeks earlier. Apparently, according to services performed in remote regions in the past, it was discovered that a public house ( otherwise referred to as a tavern consisting of a building with a bar and public rooms which often provides light meals ) was considered to be an appropriate location for a name-giving function.

The lucky family did not have to look far at all for fulfilment because Wes and Phillip had been regular patrons of an expatriate public house near Sichuan University, since the Australian pub opened in 2003 . The establishment was only too pleased to be able to assist in any way it could to solemnize the human journey of tiny Samantha. As a result, in an atmosphere of warm-heartedness, the parents were able to dedicate themselves to raising their precious child in an awareness of their eternal love.

The Chengdu ceremony included the placement on a table of three flowers. The first was a rosebud which represented infant Samantha. As she is just beginning to develop, may she gloriously flower in faithfulness. The second flower was red and symbolized Wesley as the father. It signified strength and courage. His mortal duty is to ensure that his wife and daughter never doubt that he loves them, and he is willing to put their welfare far ahead of his own. The third flower was white, and spoke of the purity of the mother, Bernadette, who will maintain an open , gentle and loving relationship with her husband and child.

Close friend Phillip Lachlan, originally from Sydney himself, had his hands full in more ways than one on this memorable Saturday afternoon. Apart from officiating at the name-giving ceremony, and anointing the little girl’s forehead with oil, he also took on the lifelong role of being a “ god “ parent - another supportive adult that the family can turn to for advice and help. The entrustment of this responsibility is usually seen as a great honour because it consists of the hope that the godparent will share a special interest in the upbringing and development of the child. In fact, for an expatriate such as Wesley from Toronto, who no longer lives close to his own extended family abroad, the supportive role of a godparent and confidante could be far more important than ever before.

Wesley and Bernadette were married on 29th September 2003. Two and a half years later their daughter was born at Shuangliu ( No 1 Peoples’ Hospital ) in Chengdu. On 25th March 2006, they officially named their daughter, Samantha Carter Ross Zhaoyuyu Hua Edmondson, at a special ceremony in a public house. At this stage, the family plans to stay in Chengdu indefinitely. The pictures featured on this page bear witness to their enduring love and happiness.


Expatriate writer Warren Rodwell has been in China since 2002, and teaches university postgraduates in Chengdu. Many of his feature stories, reviews & photographs have been published online or in hardcopy media form. Warren also narrates documentaries and administers various websites as part of his efforts to promote Chengdu & Sichuan culture(s) more globally.

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