Confirmation is the rite in which young adults confirm the vows their parent made for them at baptism. It is a part of churches that practice infant baptism. In that sacrament, parents make promises of their own personal faith and for their child. When the child is old enough to make his or her own decisions, she or he engages in a period of special instruction. If they decide to be a follower of Christ, they make their own profession of faith.
The rite itself is quite simple. Typically, it happens in groups. The group of folks come to the front of the sanctuary and answer questions about their faith. They say together, with the Congregation, the church's covenant. Then they kneel. Their parents and other adults, along with the clergy, place their hands on them and a prayer of consecration is said.
In many ways, it is like an initiation into adult hood. Typically (though not necessarily) the person joins the Fauntleroy Church at this time. They are afforded all of the rights and privileges of church membership and are accepted into the community of faith as adult members.
How long is the instruction?
It varies depending on the availability of time. In recent years, we have had programs covering two years and others which lasted about 8 weeks. The next session is planned for January to March of 2014.
Who can come?
The focus of the program is young people in grades 7 & 8, but we are open to others, especially those who are older. Parents do not need to be members.
If you take the class, do you have to join?
The point of the confirmation is that it is a choice, and not a mandate of parents or pastors. Part of the class will be to help the students discern their own choice. Typically, at least one or two students in each group choose not to be confirmed.
What if you have never been baptized?
This happens regularly. If someone is not baptized prior to the instruction, they are baptized as part of the confirmation rite.
Updated: 2/16/13: D. Kratz: B. Ackers