Congratulations to our Confirmandi.
On Behalf of His Excellency Bishop Wall, myself, Father Raja, Deacon Block and all the staff and teachers of Sacred Heart Cathedral, I would like to extend a hearty congratulations to all those who will receive the Sacrament of Confirmation today. All the students worked hard to prepare for this precious gift that God bestows on them through the hands and prayers of the Bishop. It is so very appropriate for this Sacrament to be received on Pentecost Sunday, the day in which the Church herself received, and continues to receive, the promised Gift of the Holy Spirit.
We have been working very hard on the pastoral plan of formation for the Sacrament of Confirmation for the coming year. A series of meetings are being conducted with the formators at St. John Vianney and St. Francis parish so that there is a consistent program throughout the city. The formation plan includes all four of the pillars of formation: namely Spiritual, Human, Intellectual and Pastoral.
The Spiritual pillar will consist of formation in the Liturgy, the Sacraments, and prayer.
The Human pillar of formation will consist in a series of formation events that put the candidates in contact with those experiences that help them be more fully Human. These include beauty of the Arts, especially sacred music and art, architecture, and nature. The Intellectual pillar of formation takes the form of the classroom lessons, and in this coming year at Cathedral these classes will be taught by the parish priests. Finally the Pastoral pillar of formation will engage the candidates in the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. These will include working voluntarily in the apostolates to the elderly with the Little Sisters of the Poor, to the homeless with the Missionaries of Charity, to the hungry with the local food bank, and those in need of clothing and food with Catholic Charities. The formation team will guide the progress of the candidates to prepare them for the Sacrament of Confirmation.
Please don’t put off registering your teens for the program. There continues to be a Pre-Confirmation program of preparation that will be completed first to ensure the student is ready for the Confirmation program itself. Proof of the reception of Baptism and Holy Communion is also required to begin the preparation for Confirmation. Please also work ahead of time to find a qualified Sponsor for Confirmation. The requirements are the same as those for Godparents. A qualified Sponsor is a fully initiated adult Catholic (Baptism, Holy Communion, and Confirmation) who is either Married in the Catholic Church or is living chastely as a single person.
Finally, to any adults who never received the Sacrament of Confirmation, please inquire! We form our adult Confirmation candidates in a separate program that takes place on Sunday mornings between the Masses. The Adult Candidates ordinarily receive confirmation at the Easter Vigil, but could receive at our celebration at Pentecost as well. Don’t delay availing yourself of this awesome Sacrament that equips us to live the Christian Life!
Veni Sancte Spiritus! (Come Holy Spirit! )