What is Confirmation?
Confirmation at St. Andrew’s is a 3+ year program for middle school youth to dive deeper into their faith, be challenged and grow, and ultimately begin to make faith their own. More than 325 youth participate in this weekly learning experience! The program culminates in a Confirmation celebration in the fall of the 9th grade year, where youth “confirm” they accept the free gift of God’s grace given in their baptism.
What happens during Confirmation?
The core of the 6th-8th Grade Confirmation program involves weekly participation in fun, energetic large group sessions, held in Great Hall (on Wednesdays) or in the Youth and Sports Center (on Sundays). Youth can expect to participate in teaching time, engage in large group activities, watch relevant videos, hear invited guest speakers, listen to music, and more! Every week is new and exciting as we make our learning fun and interactive for youth. Topics covered over three years include the Bible (both Old and New Testaments), Lord’s Prayer, Ten Commandments, Apostles’ Creed, what it means to be Lutheran, exploring others’ faith, and more.
Youth are then assigned to small groups of 5-10 led by a small group guide (a high school student or adult) who facilitates the conversation. Small groups provide a relaxed setting to discuss the day’s topic, share highs and lows, do activities, talk about how they see God at work in the world today, and support one other with encouragement and prayer.
New for fall 2018! 6th Grade Confirmation Kick Start is a four-week opportunity at the start of the year for 6th graders to become oriented to the Confirmation program, review some basics of the faith, and get to know their small groups and guides.
The 9th Grade Confirmation program focuses on the five promises that youth make during their Confirmation vows, discussed during four weekly sessions (including large group and small groups) and a capstone retreat. Ninth graders also write a faith statement and meet with a St. Andrew’s staff member or pastor for a Faith Conversation to discuss their journey thus far. The Confirmation celebration weekend (in late October) includes a banquet, worship celebration for confirmands and families, and the Confirmation ceremony during worship.
Who can participate?
The Confirmation program is designed for youth in grades 6-8, culminating in the fall of the 9th grade year (ending in late October). Youth who are older than 6th grade or who started a Confirmation program at another church are welcomed to join at any time! Youth do not have to members of St. Andrew’s to participate.
Because Confirmation is “confirming” one’s baptism, participants who have not been baptized are asked to meet with a youth ministry leader.
What are the expectations for Confirmation?
To participate in Confirmation, we ask that youth and their families commit to the following:
- At least 80% attendance in weekly large group and small group sessions
- Two weekend retreats in the fall (6th grade and 9th grade)
- Lenten Mentor Program (six weeks each spring), involving meeting or conversing with a trusted adult
- One week in a summer camp or mission trip hosted by St. Andrew’s or another Christian organization
- Worship and Service Leadership, including serving at least twice as a Youth Usher, Acolyte, and Nursery or Dock/Sunday School Youth Classroom Assistant
- Regular participation in worship at St. Andrew’s or other church home
- Faith Conversation (including a written faith statement) with a church staff member or pastor (in 9th grade)
The decision to be confirmed is ultimately made by the youth and their parent(s)/guardian(s) after participation in our three-year program. St. Andrew’s expectations (above) are designed for youth to adequately prepare for their Confirmation day.
Is there a cost?
Yes, there is an annual registration fee for Confirmation to cover many of the costs associated with the program, including staffing, programming (including two retreats), curriculum, supplies, and the Confirmation celebration weekend, as well as to support other middle and high school youth programs. Scholarships are available for those who request assistance (as noted on the registration form) – we are glad to help!