Rich in faith, Rich in people, Rich in hope.

Confirmation

To be confirmed is to decide to make the faith of Jesus Christ your own.

To be confirmed means taking your place in the ministry and service of the Church.

To be confirmed is a commitment to take Jesus into your world.

Confirmation is held every second year in the Parish. The next Confirmation will be held in 2011. Confirmation Classes will be advertised in the spring of 2010 and will begin in the fall of 2010. Classes take place every second week from September to April. Confirmation is open to young people (age 13+) and adults.

Confirmation Guidelines & Outline
When a person is prepared for and desirous of renewing the vows made at Baptism on his or her own, there should be an opportunity to do so at a public service of Confirmation. These vows will be made before the Bishop, who, while laying on hands, prays that in this sacramental act the Spirit given in Baptism will continue to provide strength for Christian witness and service. The Sacrament of Confirmation also enables the confirmands and the congregation to see their connection to the wider church.

Before Confirmation proceeds, the candidate must provide verification of Baptism.

The Bishop recommends that the age of Confirmation will normally be 15 or higher. It is recognized that the age of confirmands will sometimes vary from this norm. Pastoral discretion may take into account many factors - of specific importance are the following:

  • overall maturity of the young person (will they be able to participate fully in the preparation and format for classes)
  • their participation in the life and ministry of the church (are present with and engaged with the community of faith)
  • their commitment to public worship (do they take seriously the need be in church regularly)
  • their understanding and commitment to the ‘rule of life’ (do they show a readiness to adopt and live a ‘christian’ life)
  • support from family and others in seeking confirmation
  • clarity on the issue of choice - is it clearly their choice or is it family/parental ‘pressure’?
  • inclusion of ‘otherly abled’ persons - they may be present and should be welcomed

Those who have been admitted to Communion by right of their Baptism shall be provided an opportunity for Confirmation in late teenage years and emphasize the concept of strengthening for Christian service. The tendency to reduce the age of Confirmation as a way of keeping young people in Church or to avoid admitting children to Communion before Confirmation is discouraged strongly. Confirmation is a life commitment for which one should be well and carefully prepared. There are good arguments for the age of such an important undertaking being raised rather than reduced.

Confirmation will continue to provide a significant opportunity for teaching. Great care should be taken in the preparation of candidates for Confirmation. Parishes should aim for a year's preparation; three months is a required minimum. This time of preparation should be shared by laity and priest. This will give both an opportunity to work with, and get to know, the confirmands in the parish, and vice versa. Both the confirmands and the Parish benefit if the group is kept together as a study group after Confirmation.

Parishes are responsible for providing instruction to all ages in Christian education and living, beginning with parents who bring infants to Baptism, and continuing on through the whole of life. The emphasis should be on formation of Christian character and identity, of coming to know and love God. It should be more than just the giving of information and data. Confirmation readiness should be seen as part of a whole, on-going, life-long process of Christian education and nurture. Confirmation is in no way a "graduation" or simply an unthinking rite of passage, but is offered with the hope that those who share in it "may become more truly what they already are: the People of God, that New Creation in Christ which finds its joy in adoration of the Creator and Redeemer of all." (Preface of BCP, page vii)

Confirmation preparation should involve the use of a sponsor or spiritual director, guide or soul-friend to help the individual explore his or her faith and what is happening in it and to it at that particular period of life. Readiness should be interpreted in an experiential and relational approach rather than a solely intellectual one. Preparation should be part of an on-going educational process in the parish, but the decision to be confirmed rests with the individual who wishes to take this step.

Suggested Minimum Expectations for a Confirmation Program would give rise to the following:

  • Basic literacy with the Bible
  • Basic literacy with the Prayerbooks
  • Opportunity to integrate Bible and personal daily life
  • Basic literacy with prayer
  • Service Project in Local Community
  • Covenant with Church Community (based on Baptismal Covenant)

Topics of Specific Interest would be:

  • Covenant (difference between covenant and contract) and Choice
  • Vows and Promises of Baptism
  • Apostles’ Creed (I Believe ... about self, about God, about life, etc)
  • The Lord’s Prayer
  • The Church
  • The Sacraments
  • The Holy Spirit (Person & Gifts of)
  • Service and Duty (Thanksgiving)
  • The Ten Commandments
  • The Bible
  • Jesus Christ - His Life, His Teaching, His Ministry and Mission
  • The Rule of Life (Personal Mission Statement)
  • Prayer
  • Maturing (Ministry & Gift Identification)