Confirmation: The Sacrament
Baptism and Confirmation
Today we’re going to talk about the Sacrament of Confirmation. The word itself means a making firm or strong. Baptism and Confirmation are really parts one and two of the same Sacrament. Confirmation completes Baptism by filling us with the Holy Spirit and making us full members of the Church.
In both the Prayer Book and Common Worship Baptismal Services it is made clear that Baptism should be followed by Confirmation. So in Common Worship the priest addresses the parents, godparents and congregation with these words:
“As they (the children being baptised) grow up, they will need the help and encouragement of the Christian community, so that they may learn to know God in public worship and private prayer, follow Jesus Christ in the life of faith, serve their neighbour after the example of Christ, and in due course come to confirmation”. (1)
So there is a very close connection between Baptism and Confirmation. Indeed in the Early Church, when people were baptised during the night before Easter Day, they were at once confirmed by the bishop and then made their First Communion. This is why in Common Worship there is provision for the administration of Holy Baptism and Confirmation within a celebration of Holy Communion.