When children have been baptised as young people, it is with the understanding that the parents and godparents will nurture them in the faith and practice of the Church. When the young people are old enough to make a commitment of faith they are encouraged to do so. This is usually from about the age of sixteen. It is not uncommon for people much older to be confirmed as well.
The important thing about confirmation is that the person being confirmed should make the decision themselves. It is not appropriate for mum and dad or someone else to emotionally pressure them into being confirmed.
Here in the Anglican Parish of Waterloo Bay we use a mentoring approach called Making Disciples. The confirmees meet with their mentors for 13 sessions prior to the confirmation. Even commencing this process should not make the confirmee feel obliged to be confirmed. Even to the day of confirmation it is up to them to decide.
The mentors are encouraged to see the process as a journey of exploration and reflection. The confirmee is encouraged to read Luke’s Gospel and each week the confirmee is encouraged to bring questions and reflections to their discussion. Week by week the confirmee and the mentor discuss various aspects of the Church’s faith.
As confirmation is a very important step in a person’s life we celebrate confirmation on one of our feast days. The regional bishop celebrates and leads the worship on that day. It is always a joy to see the Church packed as parents and Godparents come once again to support and encourage this adult commitment of faith.
We expect that once someone has been confirmed that they will enter fully into the life of the Church: worshiping regularly; developing their personal prayer life; giving generously to the local Church and to the wider work of God; discovering and using their gifts in a variety of ways for the ongoing mission of the Church.