The Sacrament of Martyrdom What is Confirmation? It is a sacrament that completes, and perfects, the grace that we received through our baptism, so that we are more tightly bound to the Church, and allows us to preach the gospel to the nations. ”the reception of the sacrament of Confirmation is necessary for the completion of baptismal grace. For ‘by the sacrament of Confirmation, [the baptized] are more perfectly bound to the Church and are enriched with a special strength of the Holy Spirit. Hence they are, as true witnesses of Christ, more strictly obliged to spread and defend the faith by word and deed.’”(CCC 1285) It is also a perpetuation of Pentecost. Pentecost “But you will receive power when the holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, throughout Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8) Jesus is talking about Pentecost!!! “When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled, they were all in one place together. And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were. Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and come to rest on each one of them. And they were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to Receive The Holy Spirit Pentecost is when the Holy Spirit came down from Heaven and made His home in our souls. We receive this most Holy guest through the sacrament of Baptism and strengthen that indwelling in Confirmation. Here are some readings from, The Sanctifier, A book about the Holy Spirit. You will be my witnesses If Confirmation is a perpetuation of Pentecost then we are being called to be God’s witnesses to the ends of all the earth. This call is more than just one to go out and proclaim that gospel. The word witness has duel meaning in Hebrew. 1) is what we understand witness to mean: an example 2) is were we get our word martyr from. Martyrs The sacrament of Confirmation is the sacrament of martyrdom!! If we look at what happened to the first 12 disciples we can see a pattern developing. All but one were killed for the sake of the Gospel!!! Lets look at the aspects of the Confirmation celebration and we’ll see how it points to the fact that it means martyrdom. Sealing 1) A sign of a covenant between two people It binds you to God in a family relationship. Meaning that you are God’s unto death!! 2) A sign of Priesthood 3) It is a symbol of a pledge of protection. Ezekiel 9:3-6 talks about a city that is to be destroyed but the people who seal themselves with the Greek letter tau (which looks like a cross) will be protected. All of these means basically are saying that when you are sealed you are set apart. You are sealed for a special mission. What is that mission? Laying ON Of Hands Exodus 29:15 In the Old Testament, when you had hands laid on you, it meant that you were being set aside to be sacrificed. The high priests would lay their hands on all the animals that were set aside to be slaughtered as a sacrifice. Meaning that when you have hands laid on you by the Bishop (AKA High Priest) you are being set aside to be a Sacrifice for God. What does this mean for me Today? I love the Catholic faith. It really is my life!! The world may not be the same as it was back in the time of the disciples but I think that we need to be aware that we are still under persecution. We are to be the soldiers of Christ here on earth. We are called to give our lives in protection of the faith. I don’t at all want to discourage anyone from getting confirmed but if you are just here because it is what is expected of you, or because you The Nuts and Bolts In the Catholic Church we have some requirements for Confirmation. 1) Find a sponsor 2) Pick a saint name Here at our parish we also need to know 1) When you are planning on getting confirmed - April 2nd - April 19th 2) Attend the three highlighted classes on the Schedule.