What is the most stressful part of Confirmation? Is it writing a letter to the bishop? Perhaps. Finding a dress, if you’re a woman? Probably. For me, the most stressful part was choosing a Confirmation saint. How I was supposed to know what saint to choose? There are thousands of saints of the Catholic church and choosing one of them felt like an extremely daunting task. At first I didn’t know why choosing a Confirmation saint was even important. I understand now that choosing a saint reminds you of your Confirmation for years to come, symbolizes entering a new stage in your Catholic life, and the saint you choose will be with you throughout the entire process and the rest of your life. How can you help your child choose the right Confirmation saint for them? Here are a few tips on how to help your child choose the best Confirmation saint.
Step 1 – Encourage your child to narrow down the possible Confirmation saint list: This exercise will make choosing a confirmation saint a thousand times easier. I wish that someone had encouraged me to narrow down my possible Confirmation saint list by choosing a general criteria. For example, if your child wants to be a lawyer, then perhaps they should choose a saint who is one of the patron saints of lawyers. Or if your child loves England, then they should narrow their list to those patron saints of England. By choosing a general category, such as patronage or religious order, your child can narrow down their options, and thus save time.
Step 2 – Encourage your child to research some saints: Now that your child has a general category that he or she wants their Confirmation saint to fall into, then encourage your child to research some of them. At this point it is very helpful to have a saints book. In order to make the best choice about who their confirmation saint ought to be, your child needs to know who they are!
Step 3 – Pray about it: This step is often the most overlooked step. If you pray to God to help you choose a Confirmation saint, then he will certainly help you. Prayer makes any important decision much easier and spending a good amount of time in prayer will hopefully give your child a great amount of clarity.
Step 4 (Optional) – Think outside of the box: If your shild is still unsure who to choose after the previous steps, then encourage them to think outside of the box. What do I mean by this? Encourage them to think of perhaps a name they would like to bear, or a saint they feel has influenced their life or the life of a loved one. I chose St. Michael as my confirmation saint because the name of the child my mother miscarried before I was born was named Michael. One might say choosing a Confirmation saint this way is non-traditional, but I am very glad that I chose who I did.
Following these steps will hopefully help your child to choose the right Confirmation saint for them. Why did you choose your Confirmation saint? What other tips should be added to this list?