IRC 12: Confirming Children and Adults

Let’s take a break from the music tussles and continue with our examination of the Rite of Confirmation’s introduction. First, candidates have a small set of requirements:

12. Persons who are to receive confirmation must have already received baptism. Moreover, those possessing the use of reason must be in the state of grace, properly instructed, and capable of renewing the baptismal promises.

Conferences of bishops have duties on the catechetical front: 

The conference of bishops has responsibility for determining more precisely the catechetical resources for the preparation of candidates for confirmation, especially children.

The catechumenate is considered the model, not the setting, for preparing adult candidates:

In the case of adults, those principles are to be followed, with the required adaptations, that apply in the individual dioceses to admitting catechumens to baptism and eucharist.

That model should include the involvement of parishioners:

Measures are to be taken especially for catechesis preceding confirmation and for the association of the candidates with the Christian community and with individual Christians. Such association is to be of a kind that is effective and sufficient as a practical help for the candidates to achieve formation toward both bearing witness by Christian living and carrying on the apostolate. It should also assist the candidates to have a genuine desire to share in the eucharist….

Confirmation is ordinarily a prerequisite for a Catholic entering into marriage, but the  IRC concedes it can be wiser to delay Confirmation until after the marriage has begun:

Sometimes the preparation of baptized adults for confirmation coincides with preparation for marriage. In such cases, if it is foreseen that the conditions for a fruitful reception of confirmation cannot be satisfied, the local Ordinary will judge whether it is better to defer confirmation until after the marriage.

Last, the IRC states a preference for some spiritual preparation for confirming a person who is dying or in danger of dying. Any pastors with experience on this who can tell us what they’ve done?

If one who has the use of reason is confirmed in danger of death, there should, as far as possible, be some spiritual preparation beforehand, suited to the individual situation.

Any other comments?

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
This entry was posted in post-conciliar liturgy documents, Rite of Confirmation, Rites. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to IRC 12: Confirming Children and Adults

  1. FrMichael says:

    Re: spiritual preparation of the dying.

    The ritual itself has a brief but well-written section that the priest is to ask of the dying prior to emergency baptism, confirmation, and Viaticum. I usually move along those lines, expanding upon them based upon the expressed worries/issues of the person.

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