In the Sacrament of Confirmation, the baptized person is “sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit” and is strengthened for service to the Body of Christ.
“Baptism, the Eucharist, and the sacrament of Confirmation together constitute the ‘sacraments of Christian Initiation,’ whose unity must be safeguarded. It must be explained to the faithful that the reception of the sacrament of Confirmation is necessary for the completion of baptismal grace. For by the sacrament of Confirmation, the [faithful] are more perfectly abound to the Church and are enriched with a special strength of the Holy Spirit. Hence they are, as true witnesses of Christ, more strictly obliged to spread and defend the faith by word and deed.” (CCC# 1285)
Confirmation deepens our baptismal life that calls us to be missionary witnesses of Jesus. We receive the message of faith in a deeper and more intensive manner. The Catechism of the Catholic Church lists five effects of Confirmation:
- It roots us more deeply in the divine filiation [as sons of God] which makes us cry, “Abba! Father!”;
- It unites us more firmly to Christ;
- It increases the gifts of the Holy Spirit in us;
- It renders our bond with the Church more perfect;
- It gives us a special strength of the Holy Spirit to spread and defend the faith by word and action as true witnesses of Christ, to confess the name of Christ boldly, and never to be ashamed of the Cross.
Recall then that you have received the spiritual seal, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of right judgment and courage, the spirit of knowledge and reverence, the spirit of holy fear in God’s presence. Guard what you have received. God the Father has marked you with his sign; Christ the Lord has confirmed you and has placed his pledge, the Spirit, in your hearts.
Children prepare for Confirmation in the 8th grade. Preparation for this sacrament is through PSR, which runs September through April.
Any child who comes to the parish asking to receive a sacrament must attend one full year of our PSR program prior to the year in which they are to receive their sacrament(s). In other words, a child must faithfully attend the 7th grade classes before he/she will be permitted to receive as a 8th grader the sacraments Confirmation. In addition, all children preparing to receive sacrament(s) are required to attend and participate in a specific retreat for each particular grade. These retreats are determined either by the Diocese or the parish and will be communicated to the students as to when and where they are offered.