Confirmation is the completion of the graces received at Baptism and from the earliest days of Christianity was closely linked to the Sacrament of Baptism. The Letter to Hebrews lists the first elements of Christian instruction is the waters of Baptism and the Laying on of Hands and invoking of the Holy Spirit. Anointing the forehead with Chrism was added to the Laying on of Hands as the essence of the Sacrament of Confirmation we know today.
The soul that was sealed with Chrism at Baptism as a Child of God is now sealed again especially with the Holy Spirit and set aside. (See Catechism 1288 and 1289).
The graces from Sacrament of Confirmation are freely given like the graces at Baptism. It is not ‘earned’ by study or maturity, even though it is sometimes called the ‘Sacrament of Maturity’. This is not to be confused with biological maturity. (Catechism 1308)
Formation is still necessary to receive the Sacrament, and candidates should focus on deepening their spiritual life and to become familiar with the Holy Spirit in particular. It is not uncommon in the Western Latin rite to see Confirmation as a ‘coming of age’ or ‘graduation’ from religious education. However, the Christian life should one of continuing formation and growth into the persons we were created to be. Confirmation is just the beginning.
Heavenly Father, God of power and of love.
We pray for N. and all the children who are preparing for the Sacrament of Confirmation.
May your Holy Spirit help them to grow in faith, hope and love and
may they come to know you as the one true God who loves them without limit.
May their hearts welcome you gladly;
May their ears hear your voice in the scriptures;
May their eyes see you in all things;
And may they proclaim your glory
as they walk in the ways of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour.