The Sacrament of Confirmation

by Fr. Larry Rice, CSP

Spring is a busy season for Catholic bishops everywhere. This is the time of year when most Catholic parishes celebrate the sacrament of Confirmation, which, under most circumstances, must be conferred by a bishop.

Confirmation is the sacrament that seals and completes the Christian Initiation of Baptism. That’s why, when adults are initiated at the Easter Vigil, they are baptized and confirmed at the same time. But for people baptized as infants, confirmation happens when they are adolescents. This had lead to some tension between what Confirmation means theologically, and what it means culturally.

Theologically, Confirmation is the sealing with the Holy Spirit. The one being confirmed receives the gifts of the Spirit. That’s it.

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