Confirmation at Emmanuel
Confirmation is one of the seven Sacraments of the Church, which continues the process of new life begun in baptism. It is a confirming of the presence of the Holy Spirit, which is already present in our lives. As such it is both a stirring up and a seal of the gifts of the Holy Spirit and a reminder that conversion is an ongoing process ‘til Christ be formed in us’ (Galatians 4:19).
In the liturgy of Confirmation, in words echoing Isaiah 11:1-3, the Bishop prays
Almighty and ever-living God, you have given these your servants new birth in baptism by water and the Spirit, and have forgiven them all their sins. Let your Holy Spirit rest upon them: the Spirit of wisdom and understanding; the Spirit of counsel and inward strength; the Spirit of knowledge and true godliness; and let their delight be in the fear of the Lord. Amen.
Then addressing each candidate by name the Bishop says
N, God has called you by name and made you his own.
And, laying his hand on the head of each, the Bishop says
Confirm, O Lord, your servant with your Holy Spirit. Amen.
Anointing them with the oil of Chrism, the Bishop then says
Be sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit.
It is never too late to be confirmed. At Emmanuel we prepare both children and adults for Confirmation by our Area Bishop usually at the Festival of Christ the King or during the preparation season of Advent as we await the incarnation of Christ, the Word made Flesh at Christmas. The preparation sessions begin when the schools go back at the beginning of the autumn. These are relaxed and informal sessions when we explore the basics of the Christian faith and how we might apply those liberating realities in the circumstances of our daily lives and the life of the world.
If you are interested in discovering more about Confirmation, either for yourself of for your child, please do not hesitate to speak to Fr Jonathan or one of the other clergy.