Thursday, October 26, 2017

Soldiers of Christ :: The Sacrament of Confirmation in the Extraordinary Form

On September 28th, 2017, our three teens received the Sacrament of Confirmation in the Extraordinary Form.  It was so beautiful and inspiring to see these young men and women receive this final sacrament of initiation in the ancient rite (I'm pretty sure for the first time in over fifty years here in our diocese) and hope that it will be available when our younger children are ready for the sacrament as well. We are so grateful to Archbishop Sample for offering this option this year!

A quick picture taken at the campground where we were staying before driving to the church for confirmation. The confirmation took place 4+ hours from our home...

Our oldest son choose St. Maximilian Kolbe as his confirmation saint, our second son choose St. Augustine, and our oldest daughter choose St. Elizabeth of Hungary (which happens to be one of the two saints I choose at my confirmation too)! My youngest two brothers were sponsors for our boys and my mom was a proxy for our daughter's sponsor who lives in Texas. 

Each person to be confirmed kneels before the bishop. The sponsor stands behind, placing his right hand on the candidate's shoulder. The bishop addresses each one individually, using the candidate's chosen Confirmation name. Making the sign of the cross on each candidate's forehead with his thumb (which has been dipped in Holy Chrism), the bishop simultaneously extends his fingers over the candidate's head and gives him a triple blessing.

"(Name of candidate), 
Signo te signo crucis + et confirmo te chrismate salutis, 
in nomine Patris + et Filii + et Spiritus + Sancti."

"I sign thee with the sign of the + Cross, and I confirm thee with the chrism of salvation; in the Name of the Father + and of the Son + and of the Holy + Ghost."

The newly-confirmed reply:

The bishop then strikes each lightly on the cheek, saying: "Pax tecum," which means,"Peace be with thee." This symbolizes that the Christian is now a soldier for Christ and must endure suffering and the persecution that comes from conflict with the world. If the candidates for Confirmation are numerous, chants or hymns may be sung. When all have been confirmed, the following is sung or recited as the bishop washes his hands.

Afterwards the boys commented that it truly felt like they were becoming knights - Soldiers of Christ - climbing the steps of the altar and kneeling before the Archbishop one at a time. 

They also noticed that their younger sister received the sacrament of Confirmation first!  ;) 
(She was so excited to receive permission from the diocesan office the week before hand to be confirmed this year too!) 

Confirm, O God, what Thou hast wrought in us, from The holy temple, which is in Jerusalem, alleluia, alleluia.

A post shared by Jessica (@showerofroses) on

Benediction following Confirmation

Before the Confirmation began we gave each of our teens a new rosary, handmade by Ruth, which was afterwards blessed by Archbishop Sample. 

 The Archbishop also blessed the boys' icons of their confirmation saints and our daughter's pretty new Rose shaped Miraculous Medal given to them by their grandparents. 

O Heavenly Spirit! Third Person of the adorable Trinity! Whom I have received and most fervently adore, deign to take eternal possession of my soul; create and maintain therein the purity and sanctity which become Thy temple. O Spirit of Wisdom: preside over all my thoughts, words, and actions, from this hour to the moment of my death. Spirit of Understanding! Enlighten and teach me. Spirit of Counsel! Direct my youth and inexperience. Spirit of Fortitude! Strengthen my weakness. Spirit of Knowledge! Instruct my ignorance. Spirit of Piety! Make me fervent in good works. Spirit of Fear! Restrain me from all evil. Amen.