Confirmation is open to anyone 8th grade and older. If you are interested in confirmation 2020, please contact Elizabeth by September 1, 2019 at firstname.lastname@example.org
What is confirmation?
The word “confirmation” literally means “to make firm”. Confirmation seeks to make firm that which has gone before. It is closely linked to (and dependent on) what has taken place in the individual’s life already, including God’s prevenient grace, the sacrament of baptism, the Christian nurture provided by the parents and the home, and the Christian nurture provided by the faith community.
Confirmation is part of the life long process of sanctification. Through the Holy Spirit, God is at work in the life of the person – preparing, justifying, sanctifying, and empowering. The larger picture of this journey is Christian education. The confirmation program or class is one piece of this life long process of education. The larger picture is Christian formation, being transformed – over time and through the work of God’s Spirit – into the image of Christ.
Confirmation is the first public occasion in which a person affirms her or his personal response to divine grace and proclaims faith in Christ. It is the first public expression of the individual’s affirmation of the baptismal covenant. The response of faith in confirmation involves the entire person, including:
- Repentance: turning from sin and to faith in God
- Conversion: a process of transformation (not just an event). Part of the life long journey of sanctification
- Decision: to accept (receive) God’s grace and to commit one’s life to God
Confirmation also involves the laying on of hands. This is not only symbolic of the receiving of the Holy Spirit and God’s power, but the laying on of hands also symbolizes consecration for service. In confirmation, the individual is given divine authority and empowerment for the Christian calling and vocation of discipleship.
Confirmation as God’s Act
In baptism, the Holy Spirit marks the person as God’s own. In confirmation, the Holy Spirit strengthens (makes firm) the person in his or her discipleship. The confirmation prayer is: “receive the Holy Spirit.”
Confirmation as a Human Response of Faith
A child who has been baptized as an infant or a young child needs an opportunity to personally affirm the faith into which he or she was baptized and raised, and to claim the faith for him or herself. At confirmation we acknowledge that a child has reached the age when he or she can begin to assume responsibility for his or her own faith. Wesleyan tradition is clear in insisting that every person must come to accept for him or her self the salvation offered by Christ and that this commitment is to be made publicly.