Last month the parish celebrated the Sacrament of Confirmation. Each year the celebration of Confirmation by the parish is a most joyful day. Prior to receiving the sacrament, the students have to write to me requesting to receive this sacramental gift of the Holy Spirit. I want to share with you some of the thoughts that the students in the class that I taught wrote to me.
Dear Father Gordon: “When I receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit, I will be more fully prepared to face the challenges that I will have In the future. I want my Catholic Faith to always be a big part of my life. I understand the importance of helping others, which is something Jesus has taught us to do.”
Dear Father Gordon: “When we get confirmed, we are renewing the promises our parents made for us at Baptism. In Confirmation we are accepting the gift of the Holy Spirit as mature adults. At baptism we had absolutely no idea what was going on and our parents decided that we should be Catholics, but now we are making the decision on our own. I can actually say ‘yes’ by myself.”
Dear Father Gordon: “Over the years, my love for God has grown, making me want to continue my journey in my faith. I have learned to believe in God especially when others do not.”
Dear Father Gordon: “I want to become a leader in this religion. The journey to this moment has been a long one.
Dear Father Gordon: “I am at an age in my life where I have a better understanding of what Jesus really sacrificed for me, so making my confirmation will show him how thankful I really am.”
Dear Father Gordon: “This sacrament is not the end but the beginning of my faith. I know how lucky I am and that I should be thankful for what I have. Looking back on the service hours, it feels good that I was able to help people. I feel that I am ready in fulfilling God’s work.”
Dear Father Gordon: “Throughout my life I learned many things about the Catholic faith, through all the years of Religious Education at St. Martin’s. I understand that life can be occasionally difficult, but I will always try to strive for greatness for Jesus’ life.”
Dear Father Gordon: “I know that I am not perfect but God will accept me that way. I will try to be a better Christian.”
Dear Father Gordon: “I completed many service hours which opened up my eyes to help others. I also completed the Stations of the Cross in class. You told us that Jesus went through many struggles in His life. He fell and people helped Him. He died and He saved my life and the lives of others. This showed me that you can make mistakes in life and always recover from them with Jesus.”
Dear Father Gordon: “I have learned that confirmation is not the end of my faith life, but just the beginning. Thanks for reading my letter.”
Dear Father Gordon: “In preparing for Confirmation I have completed several service projects, reaching out to the community. I gave out Easter baskets and I also helped shovel snow for my elderly neighbor who had just undergone leg amputation surgery. This helped influence my life because it made me realize that you have to put others before yourself. When I am confirmed I would like to make a difference in the Catholic church by helping people that are less fortunate than I am in any way that I can. I was placed on this earth for a reason.”
Here’s my favorite from Jillian:
Dear Father Gordon: “I was researching what Confirmation really means and I came across an analogy that really sums up its meaning for me. The analogy is likened to a ‘tattooing’ of the soul—tattooing it with the mark of Christ. My soul will be figuratively tattooed with the distinguishing mark of dignity which I will carry with me some day into the next life. In a world where most people around me are tattooed with images—some good and some bad, all trying to brand themselves in one way or another, I like the idea of being marked with Christ.”