The young people and their families normally take part in a programme of preparation for Confirmation. This involves attendance at special Sunday Masses, in which they will participate. Every effort will be made to explore the religious significance of receiving the Holy Spirit in the Sacrament of Confirmation. We believe that this Sacrament properly understood can give the young people great spiritual and personal resources to help them in their young lives. Click on the link for Children’s Preparatory Book for Confirmation.
Choosing a Sponsor
To be admitted to undertake the office of sponsor, a person must:
- Be appointed by the candidate, or by the parents or whoever stands in their place, or failing these, by the parish priest or the minister; to be appointed the person must be suitable for this role have the intention of fulfilling it.
- Be not less than sixteen years of age, unless a different age has been stipulated by the diocesan Bishop, or unless the parish priest or the minister considers that there is a just reason for an exception to be made.
- Be a Catholic who has been confirmed and has received the blessed Eucharist, and who lives a life of faith which befits the role to be undertaken.
- Not labor under a canonical penalty, whether imposed or declared.
- Not be either the father or the mother of the candidate.
The tradition of taking a new name at Confirmation emphasises the new identity of a Christian being called to witness to their faith. People are encouraged to take the name of a saint or a person from the Bible who inspires them in some way.
The oil used is called the Oil of Chrism. It is olive oil mixed with balsam that is blessed by the bishop and priests of the diocese in the Cathedral at the ‘Chrism Mass’ on Holy Thursday. The Sacrament is conferred with the anointing with this ‘Oil of Chrism’ on the forehead as the Bishop says ‘Be sealed with the gifts of the Holy Spirit’.