Preparation for the Sacrament of Confirmation includes faithful completion of a preparation program and weekly participation at Sunday Mass.
Each candidate is to have a sponsor who is a practicing Catholic. [See the guidelines below]. A parish member who wishes to be a sponsor meets with Father Steve in person. Contact Father Steve at 412-720-3554 [cell] or email@example.com or 412-672-0765 [office] to receive a sponsor certificate. A person who belongs to another parish should contact their own parish.
At confirmation we receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit and confirm our baptismal promises. Greater awareness of the grace of the Holy Spirit is conferred through the anointing of chrism oil and the laying on of hands by the Bishop.
Confirmation perfects Baptismal grace; it is the sacrament which gives the Holy Spirit in order to root us more deeply in the divine filiation, incorporate us more firmly into Christ, strengthen our bond with the Church, associate us more closely with her mission, and help us bear witness to the Christian faith in words accompanied by deeds. (CCC 1316)
Through the Sacrament of Confirmation we renew our baptismal promises and commit to living a life of maturity in the Christian faith. As we read in the Lumen Gentium (the Dogmatic Constitution of the Church) from the Second Vatican Council:
Bound more intimately to the Church by the sacrament of confirmation, [the baptized] are endowed by the Holy Spirit with special strength; hence they are more strictly obliged to spread and defend the faith both by word and by deed as true witnesses of Christ. (no. 11)
Scriptural Foundation for Confirmation
In the Acts of the Apostles we read of the coming of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost. While baptism is the sacrament of new life, confirmation gives birth to that life. Baptism initiates us into the Church and names us as children of God, whereas confirmation calls us forth as God’s children and unites us more fully to the active messianic mission of Christ in the world.
After receiving the power of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, the Apostles went out and confirmed others, showing confirmation to be an individual and separate sacrament: Peter and John at Samaria (Acts 8:5-6, 14-17) and Paul at Ephesus (Acts 19:5-6). Also the Holy Spirit came down on Jews and Gentiles alike in Caesarea, prior to their baptisms. Recognizing this as a confirmation by the Holy Spirit, Peter commanded that they be baptized (cf. Acts 10:47).
Sponsors for Confirmation
A Sponsor for Confirmation is a person who is interested and able to fulfill the role of a guide, companion and mentor. A godparent is to be a person of good moral character who practices the Catholic faith. As a young person moves on in life, there is a need for spiritual encouragement and support. A godparent should be ready to do what they can to help the parents in their role so that the child will grow in faith.
Universal Church law gives these requirements.
1. The person has received the Sacrament of Baptism.
2. The person has received the Sacrament of Confirmation.
3. The person has received Holy Eucharist and participates at Sunday Mass on a regular basis.
4. The person is 16 years of age or older.
5. If the person is married, the marriage is recognized by the Catholic Church as valid.
6. The person belongs to a parish. This means that a person is registered at a parish.
7. The person supports their parish by use of the Sunday envelopes/contribution system.