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to download the 2014 Confirmation registration form.
The Sacrament of Confirmation completes the process of full initiation into the Church begun in Baptism. Through the outpouring of the gifts of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer, the person who is Confirmed in the faith seeks to be more fully conformed to Christ. Preparation for the sacrament reflects both a desire and a commitment to grow in one’s relationship to the Holy Trinity and the community of the Church. This webpage outlines the process for Confirmation of those young people who were baptized as infants in the Catholic faith and have prepared for and received the Eucharist.
If you have any questions regarding the Confirmation process, please contact Michele Dougherty at 410-519-2291 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click Here for the current Confirmation calendar.
The preparation process for Confirmation models the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults and can be grouped into four periods.
The process begins with the Period of Invitation. During this period, candidates will get to know their leaders and fellow candidates. Candidates and parents are invited to an information session. The Youth Pilgrimage in Baltimore on Palm Sunday weekend serves as an initial retreat. During the invitation sessions, candidates reflect on their past and current experience of faith and various beliefs and consider their current ideas and feelings about those realities. At the end of the Period of Invitation, candidates are invited to continue with the preparation process through an Entrance Ritual.
This is followed by the Period of Formation. During this period, candidates reflect on the person of Jesus and explore together the core of his life ministry and message. The candidate's decision to continue in the process is marked by the Covenant Ritual.
The Period of Reflection follows, during which the candidates contemplate and explore whether they are ready to make a commitment to Jesus and his gospel as fully initiated members of the Catholic Christian community. After a final retreat, the candidates are Confirmed in the community.
After being Confirmed, the Period of Mission follows. During these sessions, the newly confirmed reflect on the experience of Confirmation and prepare for transition out of the program and more fully into the life of the community. The newly confirmed are introduced to opportunities for continued involvement and invite the newly confirmed to commit to ongoing formation.
Confirmation celebrates a deeper and fuller initiation into the life of the community of faith. That faith community is located in or most closely identified with the local parish. As such, all youth preparing for the sacrament should also be simultaneously attending Mass and parish events, including our Horizons high school youth ministry.
Participation in our Horizons High School program is necessary for those not enrolled in a Catholic school as it provides the required continuation of religious education during the preparation process.
Participation in Horizons to the fullest extent possible is also encouraged of those candidates attending a Catholic school. The Catholic School is not the desired environment for the preparation of the sacrament; the young person is not being initiated into the school. The Catholic school helps provide the required religious education component, but all other dimensions of the Confirmation process are grounded in the life of the parish community. As such, all Catholic school youth preparing for the sacrament are encouraged to also participate in Horizons.
Please refer to the High School Youth Ministry (Horizons) page for more information about Horizons.
Sponsors serve a dual role. First, the Sponsor supports and encourages the candidate for Confirmation in the understanding and practice of the faith. She or he is a model of faith and helps the candidate in the immediate process of preparation.
Second, the Sponsor stands as the public witness at the time of the sacrament testifying to the desire and readiness of the candidate to celebrate the sacrament. Parents may not be sponsors.
A Sponsor must:
- Be 16 years of age or older
- Be fully initiated into Christ and the Church by Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist
- Be free to receive the sacraments of the Church
- Participate in his or her parish community
- Prayerfully support the candidate and participate in the process of immediate preparation
Sponsors should attend the Entrance Ritual (followed by a Sponsor Orientation), the Covenant Ritual, all sessions during the Period of Reflection, and the final Retreat. If the Sponsor is unable to attend of the aforementioned events, a mentor or parent may attend in their place.
The Church of the Holy Apostles offers enrollment for the preparation for Confirmation to all youth who have completed grade eight and have participated in appropriate faith formation or Catholic schooling. Youth from other Christian communities, or who are not yet baptized, should participate in the Rites of Christian Initiation in our Catechumenate process. Please refer to the page Becoming Catholic for more information.
The process we follow at the Church of the Holy Apostles reflects the guidelines of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. Youth are eligible to prepare for Confirmation if:
- They have completed 8th grade.
- They attended faith formation last year, whether in a parish program or in a Catholic school.
- They continue faith formation during high school.
- They participate in weekly Mass.
- They have been baptized and have received first Eucharist and the sacrament of Penance.
- They desire to grow in faith and seek Confirmation of their own freewill.
- They understand that Confirmation demands an ongoing response to be nurtured in life-long spiritual formation.
The general time line for preparing for the Sacrament of Confirmation is as follows:
- Candidates and parents are invited to an orientation session in the Spring.
- Candidates attend preparation sessions through June.
- The Youth Pilgrimage in Baltimore on Palm Sunday weekend serves as an initial retreat.
- Over the summer the candidates work on their group service project.
- The remaining preparation sessions resume in late August/early September.
- A final retreat is held with the candidates and their sponsors.
- Celebration of the Sacrament occurs in October or November (usually), depending on the date given us by the Bishop's office.
- A follow-up session is held with the newly confirmed after Confirmation.
to download the 2014 Confirmation registration form.