Nature Confirmation – it has been variously designated:bebaiosis or confirmatio, a making fast or sure;teleiosis or consummatio, a perfecting orcompleting, as expressing its relation to baptism.With reference to its effect it is the "Sacrament of theHoly Ghost", the "Sacrament of the Seal"(signaculum, sigillum, sphragis). From the externalrite it is known as the "imposition of hands"(epithesischeiron), or as "anointing with chrism"(unctio, chrismatio, chrisma, myron). The names atpresent in use are, for the Western Church,confirmatio, and for the Greek, to myron.
Confirmation• is a sacrament in which the Holy Ghost isgiven to those already baptized in order tomake them strong and perfect Christiansand soldiers of Jesus Christ. It builds onwhat was begun in Baptism and what wasnourished in Holy Eucharist. It completesthe process of initiation into the Christiancommunity, and it matures the soul for thework ahead.
BRIEF HISTORY OF CONFIRMATION Confirmation began as one and the samesacrament as baptism. While it is true thatwhole families were brought into the Church atonce (Acts 16:15, 31-34), at this time, adultbaptism was the norm. At the EasterVigil, deacons would baptize converts whowould then go immediately to their bishop, whowas present at the baptism, and the bishopwould confirm (i.e. acknowledge) their baptism.With baptism complete, these neophytes werebrought to the Eucharistic table for the first time.
• 300s: As Christianity continued to grow,bishops could no longer be at every baptism.Instead, they would come later to confirm thosealready baptized. We can already see a presidentfor this separation between baptism andconfirmation at the time of the Apostles (Acts8:14-17). Eventually, confirmation and firstEucharist became sacraments associated notwith infants but with older youths.• 1000s: Confirmation and First Eucharistbecame separate rites from each other.
• Early 1900s: Many Catholics, while having receivedbaptism, confirmation, and First Eucharist, were notreceiving Communion regularly. Pope Pius X moved FirstCommunion from after confirmation to around age seven.This was done in hopes of instilling the habit of regularCommunion from an early age, and today many Catholicsdo receive Eucharist regularly. Thus, First Communion nownormally precedes confirmation.• Late 1900s: The RCIA, the Rite of Christian Initiation ofAdults, revives the original sacramental order. Since RCIAcandidates are confirmed at the Easter Vigil, the bishopappoints delegates, parish pastors, to confirm in hisabsence, for he cannot be at all of the parishes in adiocese in one evening. Outside of the RCIA, the Churchtypically still follows the order recommended by Pope Pius X.
Luke 2:25 “Now there was a man inJerusalem, whose name was Simeon, andthis man was righteous anddevout, looking for the consolation ofIsrael, and the Holy Spirit was upon him.”John 1:33 . . . “He on whom you see theSpirit descends and remain…Acts 1:8 But you shall receive power whenthe Holy Spirit has come upon you . . .and many more…
Matter Chrism - For olive-oil, being of its own nature rich,diffusive, and abiding, is fitted to represent thecopious outpouring of sacramental grace, whilebalsam, which gives forth most agreeable andfragrant odours, typifies the innate sweetness ofChristian virtue. Oil also gives strength andsuppleness to the limbs, while balsam preservesfrom corruption. Thus anointing with chrism aptlysignifies that fullness of grace and spiritual strengthby which we are enabled to resist the contagion ofsin and produce the sweet flowers of virtue.
Form•During the anointing withchrism, the bishop says, “Besealed with the gift of the HolySpirit.”
MINISTERBishop - Each bishop is a successorto the apostles, upon whom the HolySpirit descended at Pentecost—thefirst Confirmation.
The faithful are obliged to receive thissacrament at the appropriate time; theirparents and shepherds of souls,especially pastors, are to see to it that thefaithful are properly instructed to receiveit and approach the sacrament at theappropriate time.
• Select a sponsor. Sponsors will sharethis sacramental time withyou. Sponsors need to be: over 18,Confirmed Catholic, not a parent.• Complete 4 Acts of Service (2 in parishlife, 2 in community life)• Attend the Confirmation Retreat.
• Participate in Mass each week and turnin attendance envelopes.• Attendance at all Confirmation sessionsis essential and required. These datesare listed on the calendar. If a candidatemust miss a session, make-up work willneed to be completed.• A Candidate must be baptized Catholicor have been received into the CatholicChurch.
• Candidates must have been enrolled ineither a Catholic High School or a parishReligious Education Program in theirfreshmen and sophomore year prior toentering immediate preparation forConfirmation.• Candidates must freely choose to receivethe Sacrament of Confirmation.
EffectsConfirmation imparts:• an increase of sanctifying grace which makes the recipient a"perfect Christian";• a special sacramental grace consisting in the seven gifts of theHoly Ghost and notably in the strength and courage to confessboldly the name of Christ;• an indelible character by reason of which the sacrament cannotbe received again by the same person.• A further consequence is the spiritual relationship which theperson confirming and the sponsor contract with the recipientand with the recipients parents. This relationship constitutes adiriment impediment to marriage. It does not arise between theminister of the sacrament and the sponsor nor between thesponsors themselves.
You stand or kneel before the bishop.Your sponsor lays one hand on your shoulder and speaksyour confirmation name.The bishop anoints you by using chrism to make the Sign ofthe Cross on your forehead while saying your Confirmationname and “Be sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Yourespond, “Amen.”The bishop then says, “Peace be with you.” You respond,“And with your spirit” or “And also with you.”Rite