Confirmation is regarded as the perfection of Baptism, because, as the introduction to the Rite of Confirmation states:
by the sacrament of Confirmation, [the baptized] are more perfectly bound to the Church and are enriched with a special strength of the Holy Spirit. Hence they are, as true witnesses of Christ, more strictly obliged to spread and defend the faith by word and deed.
Confirmation is usually received as a teenager, several years after making First Communion. The Catholic Church considers it the second of the three Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism being the first and Communion the third).
Many people think of the laying on of hands, which signifies the descent of the Holy Spirit, as the central act in the Sacrament of Confirmation. The essential element, however, is the anointing of the confirmand (the person being confirmed) with Sacred Chrism (an aromatic oil that has been consecrated by a bishop), accompanied by the words “Be sealed with the Gift of the Holy Spirit” (or, in the Eastern Catholic Churches, “The seal of the gift of the Holy Spirit”). This seal is a consecration, representing the safeguarding by the Holy Spirit of the graces conferred on the Christian at Baptism.
As the Catechism of the Catholic Church points out, “The original minister of Confirmation is the bishop.” Each bishop is a successor to the apostles, upon whom the Holy Spirit descended at Pentecost—the first Confirmation. The Acts of the Apostles mentions the apostles imparting the Holy Spirit to believers by the laying on of hands (see, for example, Acts 8:15-17 and 19:6).
The Sacrament of Confirmation confers special graces of the Holy Spirit upon the person being confirmed, just as such graces were granted to the Apostles on Pentecost. Like Baptism, therefore, it can only be performed once, and Confirmation increases and deepens all of the graces granted at Baptism.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church lists five effects of Confirmation:
it roots us more deeply as sons of God which makes us cry, “Abba! Father!”;
it unites us more firmly to Christ;
it increases the gifts of the Holy Spirit in us;
it renders our bond with the Church more perfect;
it gives us a special strength of the Holy Spirit to spread and defend the faith by word and action as true witnesses of Christ, to confess the name of Christ boldly, and never to be ashamed of the Cross.
The Adult Confirmation Preparation Program is the process used to provide teaching, discussion and formation for baptized adult candidates preparing to complete their Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Eucharist, and Confirmation).
Those considered for this process are catechized and un-catechized, baptized Catholics preparing to receive the Sacraments of Eucharist and / or Confirmation.
The Adult Confirmation Preparation Process consists of:
• The gathering of basic information on each prospective candidate with the use of a registration form,
• The securing of required documentation indicating the candidate’s Baptism and First Communion (if applicable),
• Candidates must:
(1) purchase the required texts,
(2) attend each class in the semester of classes they choose, and
(3) read and be prepared to participate in an open discussion on the material contained in each assignment.
For additional information, please contact Deacon Bob & Patty Miller at
310.371.0985 or send us an email