Communions & Confirmations Communions & Confirmations Communions & Confirmations

Preparing for the sacrament of Confirmation

When a person receives the sacrament of Confirmation within the Catholic church, that person is then seen as an adult in the eyes of the church. Though grown men and women can be confirmed at any age, most Catholics receive the sacrament around the age of 14 or 15.

One of the more important days in a young Catholic's life, the day a young man or young lady receives the sacrament of Confirmation is often the culmination of years' worth of preparation and study. Students who attend Catholic schools study their religion each day, while their public school counterparts learn about their faith at afterschool programs sponsored by the church.

In addition to learning about their faith in the classroom, young Catholics approaching Confirmation age often must prepare in other ways as well. The following are a few of the things that young Catholics might be asked to do before they can deemed ready to receive the sacrament of Confirmation.

* Commit to a service project. Many young Catholics must commit to a service project as part of their Confirmation preparation. Requirements may vary, but these projects often include volunteering within the local community so youngsters can learn the value and the importance of helping others, especially the less fortunate. Service projects can include coaching younger kids in sports or serving as a school tutor.

Some churches allow candidates for Confirmation to perform good deeds for others as part of their service project. These deeds might include helping Mom and Dad around the house or other acts of kindness that aren't necessarily completed with the help of a charity. Regardless of which service project a candidate chooses, the goal is to learn the value of service and its place in your life as an adult Catholic.

* Choose a sponsor. Another important part of preparing for the sacrament of Confirmation is choosing a sponsor to support and guide you through the process. Sponsors typically must be fellow Catholics no less than 18 years old, and someone you look up to for their strong sense of faith and commitment to the church. When choosing a sponsor, it's recommended to choose someone close to you, be it a relative or close family friend, who will continue to be a part of your life after you have been confirmed. In addition, it helps to choose someone who lives nearby, as they will be required to attend a few meetings with you in the period leading up to your Confirmation, as well as be there with you when the Bishop officially confirms you.

* Choose a Confirmation name. Candidates for Confirmation within the Catholic church will be asked to choose a Confirmation name prior to the ceremony. Choosing the name is no small task, and many prefer to choose the name of a saint whose life they want to emulate or has inspired them up to that point. Many programs require candidates to write a report about the saint whose name they seek to adopt. This report includes information about the saint as well as information about what the saint means to the candidate.

Receiving the sacrament of Confirmation is a memorable and significant day in the lives of Catholics, one that many have spent years anticipating and preparing for.