Silas Marner, the hermit, has lived a quiet and reclusive life on the outskirts of town until one day when he is robbed. As if this complication wasn't difficult enough, on New Year's Eve, Silas' life is further complicated by the death of Molly Cass, which happens when she collapses near his cottage. Her two year old daughter wanders into Silas' house.
Silas decides to keep the child and raise her as his own. At this point, Dolly Winthrop, a townsperson who has been particularly kind to Marner since his gold was taken, is one of the few people to support Marner in his decision to keep the child. Dolly encourages Silas to have the child baptized, and in explaining what this ceremony means, she also pushes him to give the child a name. He names her Hephzibah, and calls her "Eppie" for short.
So, in chapter 14, Silas and the child are baptized (or "christened") together, which is what brings Silas to the church in Raveloe for the first time.