Confirmation Class - Yields a Message of Hope

If you were asked to write a Statement of Faith at this time of your life, what would you say? I don’t know about you, but I think mine would be a lot different than it was in ninth grade. The only part of Confirmation Class I remember was the pastor’s son challenging his father with questions. We were all in shock that he was allowed to ask these questions, some of which we never even thought of. (He was smart.)

What do we expect a teenager to know at this stage of life? How can we expect to teach them everything about God, Jesus, the Trinity, history of the Reformation, the Bible (who wrote it, how were the stories passed down, how to navigate it, etc.), the Sacraments of Communion and Baptism, the Book of Order, the Confessions, how to pray – all in a 12-week period of time. After all that, we ask them to write a Statement of their Faith to present to Session. I don’t know about you, but my head would be spinning!

Many think that Confirmation is the final step to becoming an “adult member” of the church. Just like baptizing a child, when they become a teenager, they go through Confirmation. Then what? Are they done now? Is the work finished? Do they know all the answers? Of course, not!

This is the beginning. Up until this point we have been nurturing the seeds in good soil and water. Now is the time for growth – their faith journey is just starting. In class we talked about the fact that their faith will be tested. There will be times of doubt and times when they will wonder if God is listening. But there will be times of joy and celebration as well.

Many of our students wrote about how they have grown up in the church and participated in various programs which nurtured their faith in God. They also shared they felt Westminster to be a safe place where they feel loved and are allowed to ask questions. Good job, Westminster! All who volunteer with our children and youth are fulfilling the baptismal promise well. Keep it up!

Many are worried about the future of Christianity and our churches. These teens are our hope that we will carry the Word of God into the next generation and on. I see hope in these young people that they will share and be God’s love wherever they go in the world.