Confirmation

Confirmation, a sacrament of initiation, establishes young adults as full-fledged members of the faith. This sacrament is called Confirmation because the faith given in Baptism is now confirmed and made strong. During your Baptism, your parents and godparents make promises to renounce Satan and believe in God and the Church on your behalf. At Confirmation, you renew those same promises, this time speaking for yourself.

During Confirmation, the focus is on the Holy Spirit, who confirmed the apostles on Pentecost and gave them courage to practice their faith. Catholics believe that the same Holy Spirit confirms Catholics during the Sacrament of Confirmation and gives them the same gifts.

Traditionally, the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit are wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude (courage), knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord. These gifts are supernatural graces given to the soul. The 12 fruits of the Holy Spirit are charity, joy, peace, patience, benignity, goodness, long-suffering, mildness, faith, modesty, continency, and chastity — human qualities that can be activated by the Holy Spirit.

The Catholic ritual of Confirmation

The Confirmation ceremony may take place at Mass or outside of Mass, and the presiding bishop wears red vestments to symbolize the red tongues of fire seen hovering over the heads of the apostles at Pentecost. Each person wishing to be confirmed comes forward with his or her sponsor, who may or may not be one of the godparents chosen for Baptism.