In Christian denominations that practice infant baptism, confirmation is seen as the sealing of the covenant created in baptism. Those being confirmed are known as confirmands. For adults, it is an affirmation of belief. It involves laying on of hands.
Catholicism views confirmation as a sacrament. The sacrament is called chrismation in the Eastern Christianity. In the East it is conferred immediately after baptism. In Western Christianity, confirmation is ordinarily administered when a child reaches the age of reason or early adolescence. When an adult is baptized, the sacrament is conferred immediately after baptism in the same ceremony. Among those Christians who practice teen-aged confirmation, the practice may be perceived, secondarily, as a \"coming of age\" rite.
In many Protestant denominations, such as the Anglican, Lutheran, Methodist and Reformed traditions, confirmation is a rite that often includes a profession of faith by an already baptized person. Confirmation is required by Lutherans, Anglicans and other traditional Protestant denominations for full membership in the respective church. In Catholic theology, by contrast, it is the sacrament of baptism that confers membership, while \"reception of the sacrament of Confirmation is necessary for the completion of baptismal grace\". The Catholic and Methodist denominations teach that in confirmation, the Holy Spirit strengthens a baptized individual for their faith journey.
Confirmation is not practiced in Baptist, Anabaptist and other groups that teach believer's baptism. Thus, the sacrament or rite of confirmation is administered to those being received from those aforementioned groups, in addition to those converts from non-Christian religions. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints does not practice infant baptism, but individuals can be baptized after they reach the \"age of accountability\". Confirmation in the LDS Church occurs shortly following baptism, which is not considered complete or fully efficacious until confirmation is received.
In the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church, confirmation, known also as chrismation, is one of the seven sacraments instituted by Christ for the conferral of sanctifying grace and the strengthening of the union between the individual and God.
In the Latin (i.e., Western) Catholic Church, the sacrament is customarily conferred only on persons old enough to understand it, and the ordinary minister of confirmation is a bishop. \"If necessity so requires\", the diocesan bishop may grant specified priests the faculty to administer the sacrament, although normally he is to administer it himself or ensure that it is conferred by another bishop. In addition, the law itself confers the same faculty on the following:
The main reason why the West separated the sacrament of confirmation from that of baptism was to re-establish direct contact between the person being initiated with the bishops. In the Early Church, the bishop administered all three sacraments of initiation (baptism, confirmation and Eucharist), assisted by the priests and deacons and, where they existed, by deaconesses for women's baptism. The post-baptismal Chrismation in particular was reserved to the bishop. When adults no longer formed the majority of those being baptized, this Chrismation was delayed until the bishop could confer it. Until the 12th century, priests often continued to confer confirmation before giving Communion to very young children.
After the Fourth Lateran Council, Communion, which continued to be given only after confirmation, was to be administered only on reaching the age of reason. Some time after the 13th century, the age of confirmation and Communion began to be delayed further, from seven, to twelve and to fifteen. In the 18th c. in France the sequence of sacraments of initiation was changed. Bishops started to impart confirmation only after the first Eucharistic communion. The reason was no longer the busy calendar of the bishop, but the bishop's will to give adequate instruction to the youth. The practice lasted until Pope Leo XIII in 1897 asked to restore the primary order and to celebrate confirmation back at the age of reason. That didn't last long. In 1910 his successor, Pope Pius X, showing concern for the easy access to the Eucharist for children, in his Letter Quam Singulari lowered the age of first communion to seven. That was the origin of the widespread custom in parishes to organise the First Communion for children at 2nd grade and confirmation in middle or high school[clarification needed].
The 1917 Code of Canon Law, while recommending that confirmation be delayed until about seven years of age, allowed it be given at an earlier age. Only on 30 June 1932 was official permission given to change the traditional order of the three sacraments of Christian initiation: the Sacred Congregation for the Sacraments then allowed, where necessary, that confirmation be administered after first Holy Communion. This novelty, originally seen as exceptional, became more and more the accepted practice. Thus, in the mid-20th century, confirmation began to be seen as an occasion for professing personal commitment to the faith on the part of someone approaching adulthood.
On the canonical age for confirmation in the Latin or Western Catholic Church, the present (1983) Code of Canon Law, which maintains unaltered the rule in the 1917 Code, lays down that the sacrament is to be conferred on the faithful at about the age of discretion (generally taken to be about 7), unless the Episcopal Conference has decided on a different age, or there is a danger of death or, in the judgement of the minister, a grave reason suggests otherwise (canon 891 of the Code of Canon Law). The Code prescribes the age of discretion also for the sacraments of Reconciliation and first Holy Communion.
The Roman Catholic Church and some Anglo-Catholics teach that, like baptism, confirmation marks the recipient permanently, making it impossible to receive the sacrament twice. It accepts as valid a confirmation conferred within churches, such as the Eastern Orthodox Church, whose Holy Orders it sees as valid through the apostolic succession of their bishops. But it considers it necessary to administer the sacrament of confirmation, in its view for the only time, to Protestants who are admitted to full communion with the Catholic Church.
The same passage of the Catechism of the Catholic Church also mentions, as an effect of confirmation, that \"it renders our bond with the Church more perfect\". This mention stresses the importance of participation in the Christian community.
The \"soldier of Christ\" imagery was used, as far back as 350, by St Cyril of Jerusalem. In this connection, the touch on the cheek that the bishop gave while saying \"Pax tecum\" (Peace be with you) to the person he had just confirmed was interpreted in the Roman Pontifical as a slap, a reminder to be brave in spreading and defending the faith: \"Deinde leviter eum in maxilla caedit, dicens: Pax tecum\" (Then he strikes him lightly on the cheek, saying: Peace be with you). When, in application of the Second Vatican Council's Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, the confirmation rite was revised in 1971, mention of this gesture was omitted. However, the French and Italian translations, indicating that the bishop should accompany the words \"Peace be with you\" with \"a friendly gesture\" (French text) or \"the sign of peace\" (Italian text), explicitly allow a gesture such as the touch on the cheek, to which they restore its original meaning. This is in accord with the Introduction to the rite of confirmation, 17, which indicates that the episcopal conference may decide \"to introduce a different manner for the minister to give the sign of peace after the anointing, either to each individual or to all the newly confirmed together.\"
When discussing confirmation, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) uses the term \"ordinance\" owing to their origins in a Protestant environment, but the actual doctrine describing their ordinances and their effects is sacramental. Church ordinances are understood as administering grace and must be conducted by properly ordained clergy members through apostolic succession reaching back through Peter to Christ, although the line of authority differs from Catholics and Eastern Orthodox. Baptism by water is understood as representing the death of the old person and their resurrection from that death into a new life in Christ. Through baptism by water, sin, and guilt are washed away as the old sinner dies and the new child of Christ emerges. Confirmation is understood as being the baptism by fire wherein the Holy Spirit enters into the individual, purges them of the effects of the sin from their previous life (the guilt and culpability of which were already washed away), and introduces them into the church as a new person in Christ. Through confirmation, the individual receives the Gift of the Holy Ghost, granting the individual the permanent companionship of the Holy Ghost as long as the person does not willfully drive Him away through sin.
Other actions typically associated with confirmation in Catholicism or Eastern Orthodoxy, such as the reception of a Christian name, anointing of body parts with chrism, and the clothing of the confirmant in a white garment or chiton are conducted separately as part of a ceremony called the Initiatory.
Lutheran confirmation is a public profession of faith prepared for by long and careful instruction. In English, it is called \"affirmation of baptism\", and is a mature and public profession of the faith which \"marks the completion of the congregation's program of confirmation ministry\". The German language also uses for Lutheran confirmation a different word (Konfirmation) from the word used for the sacramental rite of the Catholic Church (Firmung). 59ce067264