Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist form a unity as the Sacraments of Initiation. For most, Confirmation is the final Sacrament of Christian Initiation. In Baptism we receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, and through Confirmation we are sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit by the laying on of hands, and the anointing with Chrism. Confirmation is the sacrament that strengthens and continues Baptism.
In the Rite of Confirmation, the Bishop (or a Priest who represents the Bishop) extends his hands over you and asks the Holy Spirit to come to you with seven special graces, or gifts: wisdom, understanding, right judgment, courage, knowledge, reverence, and wonder & awe.
The preparation process for Confirmation consists of class sessions in which the candidates strengthen their faith and learn the scriptures, symbols, and effects of the Sacrament of Confirmation. Candidates also participate in a retreat and are encouraged to complete service to the Church.
Parents should encourage their children during the preparation process for Confirmation. Parents are the first teachers of the faith, and the Church assists them in this mission. At Baptism, parents accepted the responsibility of training their children in the practice of the faith, so participation in the sacramental preparation program helps parents in living out this promise.
In Baptism parents and godparents promised that the child would be raised in the faith. They professed their faith on behalf of the child. In Confirmation the candidates will speak for themselves; they will renew their Baptismal promises. To support them, candidates will choose a sponsor who will stand with them as they are presented to the Bishop for Confirmation.
The Church encourages, if possible, that one of the Baptismal Godparents serve as a sponsor for Confirmation because this expresses more clearly the link between the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation. A good choice for a sponsor is someone who has been close to the candidate (someone other than a parent) and supportive throughout life. The sponsor must have been Baptized Catholic, must receive Holy Communion regularly, and have been confirmed. They must be at least 16 years old, and a good role model of the Catholic faith. If they are married, they must have received the Sacrament of Matrimony in the Catholic faith.
Students should register for Confirmation preparation by contacting the parish office. College students and other adults should inquire about the “Becoming Catholic” (RCIA) process.