In our Janesville Cluster, which includes the parishes of Nativity of Mary, St. Patrick, St. William, and St. John Vianney , Confirmation Preparation takes place during the junior year of high school. Students receive the sacrament of Confirmation in the fall of their senior year. Confirmation is celebrated with other parishes from the area. The host parish varies from year to year.
Our Confirmation students meet each Wednesday night throughout their junior year, from 7:15 - 8:30 p.m. in the St. Mary School. Confirmation is the last “Sacrament of Initiation” and the final step to embracing our Catholic faith as an adult. It is a much deeper study of our faith than the freshman and sophomore years. Students must therefore have attended religious education classes the year immediately preceding enrolling for Confirmation. If your junior student has not done so, please call our coordinators to discuss the situation.
Our curriculum includes four texts: YOUCAT (Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church), The Catechism of the Catholic Church, and The Catholic Youth Bible (St. Mary’s Press). We will also incorporate mini-retreat days, along with a bigger retreat day in the spring.
As a Confirmation candidate, each student will choose a sponsor. The sponsor needs to be a practicing, confirmed Catholic who is NOT a parent, and is willing to spend time with the student as a mentor both before and after Confirmation. Sponsors typically participate in our mini-retreats, and need to be available for the celebration of Confirmation.
Students will also choose a saint as their Confirmation name. We will look at many saints throughout the year, and the students will have ample opportunity to read about others on their own. They should choose a saint whose life they admire and perhaps wish to emulate.
Weekly Mass attendance is expected. Our goal is to prepare the Confirmation candidates to see that receiving Confirmation is not the END of their religious education. Rather, religious education and faith formation is a lifelong process, requiring a willingness to study and enrich their faith for the rest of their lives through the four catechetical elements: community, worship, service and knowledge.
Community, worship, service, and knowledge
are the basis for our teaching during Confirmation Preparation.
Community: Belonging to the Church. Confirmation is the completion of Baptism and the final of the three sacraments of initiation. The candidates are in the process of moving forward to adult membership in the community of faith. We will help them develop a sense of belonging in the parish community and in the church at large.
Worship: Personal and liturgical prayer and faith. Along with active participation in weekly Mass, we will help them deepen their own faith and prayer lives. They will experience a variety of prayer forms and methods, especially the praying of scripture. We will emphasize the fact that Confirmation is, above all, a commitment to Eucharist and the Eucharistic community.
Service: Justice and love in action. We believe that commitment to Christianity involves a way of life, the living out of a moral code and value system based on the principles of justice and Christian love in our Catholic Church. The candidates will be actively involved in living the faith through ministry in our parish and the community.
Knowledge: Knowing the Christian/Catholic tradition. A meaningful celebration of Confirmation requires us to reinforce and build on the candidate's basic knowledge of the faith. Confirmation Preparation is NOT however, a one time course in Catholic doctrine. We teach based on the assumption that our students are bringing years of Catholic education into their sacramental preparation.
We expect that our Confirmation students will participate in many ministries throughout high school and their lives as adult Catholics. Please encourage your student in developing a habit of “giving to others”.