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Confirmation is Not the End!

May 11, 2016 By Laura Jean Rabiipour

Recently a coworker and I were chatting about her daughter who was soon to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation.  She had just completed the faith formation classes at her parish, and from the very first meeting there was one thing the instructors kept emphasizing to all those to receive the Sacrament - Confirmation is not the end! 

It's not uncommon for students and parents going through the Confirmation process to fall into the mindset that Confirmation is the last step of their religious education, after which they "graduate" from having to be involved in the Church (or even having to attend Mass at all!).

So when the formation classes are over, and the volunteer hours are complete, and you have received the Sacrament of Confirmation . . . What's next? 

According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

Preparation for Confirmation should aim at leading the Christian toward a more intimate union with Christ and a more lively familiarity with the Holy Spirit – his actions, his gifts and his biddings – in order to be more capable of assuming the apostolic responsibilities of Christian life.(1309)

Confirmation is the START of life as a fully initiated member of the Catholic Church, the Body of Christ. With that comes a greater responsibility, not only to share your faith but also to be a continuing example of the faith in and OUT of Church. It is that simple and that challenging. We are now called to go deeper and deeper into our faith so as to grow in our relationship with Christ and His Church.

Read The 5 Spiritual Effects of the Sacrament of Confirmation

Like any organization, once you are initiated, are you done? Of course not. You have only just begun. In the Church you continue to be a mature, active member and you work in tangent with other members to nurture and grow in faith, hope, and love.

For those whose formation classes may be done or coming to a close, it is important to realize that your catechesis will never end. You will continue to be filled with questions, and your faith will grow by leaps and bounds if you respond with an eager pursuit of the answers. You can spend your entire life studying and reflecting on the faith.  As you grow older, you will discover more about yourself, your relationships, your God-given desires, and God himself. And you have a guide and helper dwelling inside you---the Holy Spirit.

Confirmation bestows the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit, gifts given for the purpose of fully living your faith in the world as a Child of God.  The Sacrament gives you the spiritual tools you need for your life-long adventure of living out your Catholic faith.

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To encourage young people to stay active in their faith after Confirmation, here are some ideas for continuing involvement in the parish or diocese:

  • Connect with parish youth groups, or organize your own activities for young people.
  • Join a Catholic Bible study, or start a Catholic Bible study for your age group.
  • Join a parish ministry in an area you are passionate about. They need young people!
  • Help out with coffee and donuts or other social functions before or after Mass.
  • Make a regular Holy Hour in Eucharistic Adoration; make it a group activity with a meal afterwards.
  • Organize teens to pray the rosary together before or after Mass once a week.
  • Volunteer for First Communion/Reconciliation preparation classes.
  • Pray and ask God where he wants to use you!

After Baptism and First Holy Communion, Confirmation is the third and final Sacrament of Initiation into the Catholic Church. This places Confirmation at the beginning, not the end, of our Sacramental journey.  After Confirmation, keep going!  Regularly make use of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and prayerfully consider a vocation to the Sacrament of Marriage, the Sacrament of Holy Orders, or the Religious Life. And don’t forget: Confirmation is just the beginning!

And don't forget: Confirmation is just the beginning!

Do you have other advice for teens who have recently received their Confirmation? If so, please share with our readers in the comments below.

It’s not uncommon for students and parents going through the Confirmation process to fall into the mindset that Confirmation is the last step of their religious education, after which they “graduate” from having to be involved in the Church ... but Confirmation is the START of life as a fully initiated member of the Catholic Church, and with that comes a greater responsibility.

This article has been updated and was originally published in May 2014. © The Catholic Company. All rights reserved.

 

CATEGORIES: Catholic Living / Sacraments

Comments

Joseph
Joseph says
Nov 7 2018 7:16PM
I don’t know why but it feels like I wanted to make confirmation over and over again after the mass, but I knew I couldn’t. I missed my CCD class teacher and all my friends and the bishop that went there. Now my job is getting tougher. Since I don’t have my catechits to support me anymore, I’m all alone on this journey. Do you have any advice for me?
Hi Joseph, it is good to stay plugged in to a group at your parish, whether it is a prayer group, a ministry, or a confraternity or sodality (such as the Legion of Mary, or the Knights of Columbus). God does not mean for us to live as lone ranger Christians, so plugging in to a faithful smaller parish community which you can participate in is very beneficial for spiritual growth. Pray to Our Lady and the Holy Spirit to lead you where you will flourish. God Bless!
Lucy
Lucy says
Sep 13 2016 5:47PM
I don't think so. This is not fair for you. Don't give up. Keep pushing. You'll soon have met a wise kindhearted priest...one with supreme patience and you will be at peace.
heidi
heidi says
May 11 2016 5:35PM
I am so heartbroken, I have attended my home town Catholic church for 5 years, I have gone thru RCIA two times, I also formed a class " The Bible Timeline" by Jeff Cavins, I crave the knowledge for the Bible, and so excited to receive the Holy Sacraments. I filed two seperate annulments because of my past 2 marriages. I received a letter from the Catholic diocese that they do not see this to be a happy ending because their are no witnesses, these marriages took place over 35 years ago, the two witnesses I did have passed away. So many prayers needed, I'm afraid that I will never get the chance to be a faithful Christian in our church.

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Commentary by

Laura Jean Rabiipour Laura Jean Rabiipour

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.

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