Confirmation: The 7 Gifts of the Holy Spirit


During the Rite of Confirmation the bishop and the priests who are administering the sacrament lay their hands upon those who are to be confirmed and say:


“All powerful God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,

by water and the Holy Spirit

you freed your sons and daughters from sin

And gave them new life.

Send your Holy Spirit upon them

to be their helper and guide.

Give them the spirit of wisdom and understanding,

the spirit of right judgment and courage,

the spirit of knowledge and reverence.

Fill them with the spirit of wonder and awe in your presence.

We ask this through Christ our Lord.”

It is here that 7 Gifts of the Holy Spirit are listed.  These 7 gifts “complete and perfect the virtues of those who receive them” (CCC 1831).  According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, “the effect of the sacrament of Confirmation is the special outpouring of the Holy Spirit as once granted to the apostles on the day of Pentecost.”

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The Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit


a3Wisdom is our ability to value spiritual things over worldly ones. It enables us to desire the things of God and correctly order the things in our life. This gift helps us view the world through God’s perspective and the light of our faith. It instills a desire to contemplate the things of God.


a2Understanding helps us grasp the truths of the faith more easily and profoundly. Our human intellect cannot grasp all of God’s mysteries, but through the gift of understanding we can be lead to truth, even when we do not fully comprehend. This gift strengthens our insight through prayer, scripture, and the sacraments.


a1Right Judgment/Counsel acknowledges the difference between right and wrong and bestows proper judgment. A person with right judgment avoids sin and leads a life for Christ. Counsel inspires us to speak up and encourage others to do the correct thing. It bestows upon us prudence, allowing us to act promptly and rightly in the face of difficult situations.


a6Courage sustains our decision to follow the will of God in any situation. It allows us to stand up and defend our faith, even when threatened by bodily injury or death. This gift allows us to be steadfast in our decisions to do well and to endure evil even when we do not want to.


a8Knowledge is awareness to God’s plan. It is not simply an accumulation of facts but rather an understanding of God’s purpose and how we ought to respond. Knowledge helps bring to light temptations and to discern whether to give in or live a life worthy of God’s approval.


a7Reverence is our obedience to God and our willingness to serve him. It is not just obedience through a sense of duty but rather obedience out of love and devotion. It facilitates a deeper respect for God and the Church.


a4Wonder and awe makes us aware of the glory and majesty of God. This gift is also synonymous with “Fear of the Lord”, in which we dread sin and fear offending God. We fear displeasing God and losing our connection with him. Wonder and awe increases our desire to draw closer to God and depart from sin.

About Laura Jean

Laura Jean is a cradle Catholic who grew up in the frozen tundra of Minneapolis, MN. Searching for warmer weather she flew south and attended Belmont Abbey College. There, she cultivated a deeper love for Our Mother Mary, southern life, and a boy named Nicholas who will soon be her husband. She was instructed by her loving folks to grow her faith and when possible to share it, a mission she is now working to accomplish at The Catholic Company. Follow her on Google+.
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9 Responses to Confirmation: The 7 Gifts of the Holy Spirit

  1. G.B. Folker says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful knowledge from our Blessed Savior. It helps to explain to children and young folks the teachings of the Church.

  2. I like the list of the seven gifts of the Holy Sprit. It is great, blessing to you.

  3. Marilyn J. says:

    Hello: Have recently found your site and find the posts very informative and concise.
    I have returned to the Catholic church after 40 years. I would love to print off this list of the 7 gifts of the Holy Spirit to add to binder. Is it possible to set the blogs up to be printable. Thank you

  4. Gretchen says:

    Thank you very much for the compliment Marilyn, and welcome home! We are working on adding an option for printing out our blogs for you.

  5. Pingback: Confirmation is Not the End! | The Catholic Company

  6. Pingback: After Pentecost: Catechesis on the Holy Spirit | The Catholic Company

  7. diana says:

    Thank you so much for this Gods blessings over your life Amen in King Jesus Yeshua Holy Name Amen

  8. Steven Sallwasser says:

    I am deeply disappointed in your teaching on the gifts of the Holy Spirit. You make it sound like something the RCC made up, not from the Bible. You need to have the Bible references not just the Catechism reference. You lose a lot of people both Catholic and non-Catholic by indicating it is not from the Bible.

  9. Gretchen says:

    Hi Steven, the Catechism of the Catholic Church is part of the teaching Magisterium of the Catholic Church and is therefore a primary resource for understanding what the Church teaches about the Sacrament of Confirmation. By using the Catechism as a reference, it does not imply that the Sacrament is “made up, not from the Bible.” The passage of the Catechism cites in detail the Scriptural references. Furthermore, this is a blog post and not an exhaustive treatment of the topic. For both Catholics and non-Catholics, the Catechism of the Catholic Church is the best place to go to understand what the Catholic Church teaches about various Biblical topics such as the Sacraments.

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