“The Holy Spirit is a gentle guest and friend, who inspires, guides, corrects, and strengthens- the interior Master of life according to Christ.” Catechism of the Catholic Church #1697

“Recall that you have received the spiritual seal, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of right judgment and courage, the spirit of knowledge and reverence, the spirit of holy fear in God’s presence. Guard what you have received.” St. Ambrose

“If two –thirds of the Catholic kids in the National Study said that they have not have a powerful religious experience, why don’t we give them some in Confirmation prep!” –Lansing, MI

“Does social media have an impact on the brain of an adolescent and how they receive information? Are there brains being wired differently? Does our Confirmation Prep try to keep up with the face-paced media or do we give them experiences of contemplation?”    Mary Heinrich, Des Moines, IA

“Now I know what my Confirmation message will be next year. Got the whole thing figured out this morning.”– Most Rev. Martin J. Amos, bishop of Davenport (after participating in his diocesan planning day)

“One of the difficulties to be addressed and resolved is the question of “language” (mentality, sensibility, tastes, style, vocabulary) between young people and the Church (catechesis, catechists).  A necessary “adaptation of catechesis to young people is urged, in order. to translate into their terms” the message of Jesus with patience and wisdom and without betrayal.”    General Directory of Catechesis #185


Promote Discipleship as the Expectation for Life After Confirmation

“I keep thinking we should connect Confirmation to getting a driver’s license. You have to learn the rules of the road before you can get a license. Same thing with Confirmation prep. You have to learn the rules of the road for discipleship before you get Confirmed. And you don’t stop driving once you get a license, you are just beginning. Same with Confirmation. You don’t stop living the faith once once you get Confirmed. Plus driving is going to take you to different places and experiences. So is Confirmation. I’m telling you, it’s a rich metaphor. We can work with this!” –Paul Mach, Diocesan Director, Joliet, IL

“Our parish brings Confirmation candidates to Angola State Prison. They tour the facility, including the Death Chamber. They gather for presentations and a retreat led by the inmates who share how they have been transformed, how they have met God, how they have learned to serve others as peer ministers and Hospice Volunteers at the Prison. Kids tell us it is a powerful , unforgettable experience.” –Cherry Riggs, St. George Parish, Baton Rouge, LA.


Increase Spiritual Sensitivity and Awakenings to the Holy Spirit  

S. Halbach from Des Moines contributed this insight:

I want to share a video I found on YouTube that illustrates Mike Carotta’s point on emphasizing those awakening moments and how our job as catechetical leaders is to show our teens and everyone we minister to what to look for. 

Oftentimes, we encounter Holy Spirit moments (moments of awakening) in our lives (like the Spirit School example given during Mike’s presentation) and many of us never realize those moments because we are unaware of what they look like or what they might be. After teaching our community what to look for, (a seemingly disconnected community suddenly uniting in prayer, sudden urges to check in on someone you don’t normally talk to, an answer to a tough theological question suddenly dawns on you, etc). After our teens know what to look out for, they can more clearly observe how God works in their lives.

“I wonder if anyone out there is cultivating spiritual sensitivity and awakenings through the Catechesis of The Good Shepherd Level 3( The Plan of God).” –Elaine Baur

“Talk about helping kids see the Invisible! Did you know that astrophysicists tell us that only about 4.5% of matter is visible? I tell my kids that about 95% of matter in invisible.” –Tim, Red Oak, IA


Evaluate and Own Catholic identity


Engagement in  Challenging Moral and Theological Reflection

“I think the Common Core shift in Education holds so many techniques and learning principles in Confirmation Prep- particularly with the enhancements related to articulation and engaging moral and theological reflection.” — Maria Lewis, Holy Name of Jesus, Niceville, FL.



Personal Spiritual Growth Plans

“It’s amazing how our candidates reference their Spiritual Growth Plans. They’ve embraced the process of self- assessment and own it.”–Charlene Jair

“We help kids form a Spiritual Growth Plan by beginning with this question: ‘Spiritually speaking, you know you will be successful when …”  Jennifer Mosinski, Des Moines, IA


Articulation of Faith, Experiences of Grace, and Grasp of the Tradition


Mentoring Parish Environment

“We decided to do Confirmation Prep as 6 mini-retreats on Sundays. The first one involves sponsors or parents (as stand- ins) who bless their candidate to begin the process and then AFTER Confirmation. That’s right, we have a session AFTER Confirmation and both the candidates and their sponsors come back. It’s our attempt at mystogogia. The kids really feel like the Church is walking with them on this journey.” –Eileen Maggiore, Christ the King, Lombard, IL

“Parents come to every Confirmation session with their teen- most the time anyway.”  Bernadette, Neola, IA


Non-Gathered Formation


Submit something you have read or heard that is worth keeping in mind in regard to confirmation preparation. Be sure to include the source. Click to share!