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    Topic:   A question for everyone about Sanity Checks  

    Viewing 7 posts - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
    • Author
    • #8860

      1894 posts

      I have been asked to add “Baptism or Christening” to the list of duplicate tags to check in the Sanity Check tool. At first that seemed a reasonable, and simple, thing to do.

      But it raises a coule of questionst:

      • Would you say that a baptism (BAPM) and a christening (CHR) for the same person is a duplicate?

      Also – similar issue:

      • Would you say a burial (BURI) and a cremation (CREM) for the same person is a duplicate?
      • Both baptism and christening might be caused by merging family trees where different tag for the same event is used.
      • Cremation AND burial for the same person can happen if the ashes are buried later (perhaps in a family grave).

      Also important to remember that a “sanity check” result does not always mean there is an error to fix. Sometimes it is correct data, but unusual.

      My personal kiwitrees site is

      133 posts


      This question sent me back to look at the GEDCOM standard. It parallels my personal thought.

      I consider BAPM and CHR the same event and on the occasion of a merge, convert CHR events to BAPM as my personal choice as the default event.

      I treat BURI and CREM as two distinct events generally for the reason you stated. I think some religions and other traditions only allow cremation when burial or placement in a Columbarium follow. I currently report placement in a Columbarium as a burial.

      Dealing with these two events, really hasn’t been a big issue for me. It is just another challenge of trying to standardize/simplify reporting how the peoples in a diverse world lived and died.



      Apache 2.4.27  PHP 7.19 MariaDB 10.2.8


      169 posts

      Baptism and Christening are not strictly the same thing. I have people baptised who then underwent an Adult Christening. And I have people who were baptised TWICE – usually as a non-conformist, then Church of England.

      A body could be buried, then exhumed for cremation. And ashes from a Cremation can be later buried in (say) a spouse’s grave.

      No need for these sanity checks in my book.


      Penguins Are  Boss

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      563 posts

      CHR and BAPM is the same in my opinion. Grownup adult BAPM/CHR is a different one (called CHRA as tag). The tags are used differently in software. Dunno why it is used in 2 tags.

      CREM and BURI is 2 different things. Here in Denmark you are cremated in ashes and burried as corpse. In Denmark you can not be baptised twice. You can have a given name and then after that baptised. There is no tag for “given name” – I used BLES but this one is a religious blessing – We can not use BLES when you get a name without baptise today. But I find it useful for the person I have born 1914 cause he got a name and the priest wrote it in the churchbook. At the confirmation he was CHRA

      Normally we call the adult baptisme (CHRA) and as you mention PAB among with the confirmation

      Jamie Jaconelli

      admin and owner of:,, (


      1894 posts

      Thanks everyone for your input, both here and direct via email. Very helpful.

      There are two main challenges with coding “sanity checks”:

      1. Ensuring they run efficiently
      2. Avoiding an unreasonable number of “false positives”

      One suggestion was to include date and place checks in deciding if an event is a duplicate or not (two on the same date in the same place = duplicates; otherwise not). This is an idea, but one that breaks rule 1, especially on medium to large trees, of course depending on server resources.

      Rule 2 I decided, as you have all pointed out, eliminates combining burial and cremation. Even in my own data I found too many cases where burial (of ashes) followed a cremation.

      But, on balance, and given Jamie’s valid point about “adult baptism”, there is a case for treating BAPM and CHR as duplicates. This doesn’t mean it is never valid though. That is the point of “sanity checks”. They highlight possible errors, not definite ones. All results need checking carefully.

      So in the next release there will be duplicate checks available for “Baptism or christening”; Burial”; and “Cremation”.

      My personal kiwitrees site is
      1 user thanked author for this post.

      563 posts

      I had a mix of CHR/BAPM. So I decided only to have CHR. The batch did that trick and I removed the tag BAPM from the setup.

      When you look at the explanation of gedcom tags it says:

      BAPL BAPTISM-LDS The event of baptism performed at age eight or later by priesthood authority of the LDS Church.
      BAPM BAPTISM The event of baptism (not LDS), performed in infancy or later. (See also BAPL and CHR)
      BLES BLESSING A religious event of bestowing divine care or intercession. Sometimes given with a naming ceremony.
      CHR CHRISTENING The religious event (not LDS) of baptizing and/or naming a child.
      CHRA ADULT_CHRISTENING The religious event (not LDS) of baptizing and/or naming an adult person.
      BURI BURIAL The event of the proper disposing of the mortal remains of a deceased person.
      CREM CREMATION Disposal of the remains of a person’s body by fire.

      Jamie Jaconelli

      admin and owner of:,, (


      167 posts

      A tardy response from me as I was on holiday without internet access – yes that’s still possible!!

      For completeness, I’ll add my thoughts, which seem to correspond closely with what has already been said:

      1. I regard BAPM and CHR as the same thing. My database has predominantly BAPM but a number of CHR as a result of historical merges – I guess I should change them all to BAPM but have never regarded it as a problem
      2. I regard BURI and CREM as two separate events which can both legitimately exist for the same individual.
      So I shall be happy with the proposed checks for the next release.

      Ron in France
      kiwitrees 3.3.6; PHP 7.2.17

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