Frequently asked questions

What is confirmation?
Confirmation is the point at which you re-affirm your baptism vows. The bishop prays that you will be confirmed with the Holy Spirit. S/he will lay hands on your head, and anoint you with chrism – holy oil. These two actions show that you have been set apart by God, to follow in the Way of Christ the King. Like baptism, confirmation is a sacrament – a sign of God’s grace.

If you haven’t already been prepared for holy communion at an earlier age, the confirmation service will be the first time when you receive Christ in bread and wine at the Eucharist.

What happens if I haven’t already been baptised (‘christened’)?
You will be baptised either before or during the confirmation service.

How old do I have to be to be confirmed?
By the summer, you have to be in Year 5, or older. This is the age at which we think that you are old enough to make this important decision for yourself. Of course, many adults are also confirmed.

What happens if I am not sure?
Talk to parents, friends or the parish clergy. If you are still not sure, it may be best to wait. Sometimes people find answers to their questions by doing the course.

So there is some preparation for confirmation?
Yes, there are weekly meetings. Young people and adults meet for six weeks beforehand.

When are confirmation services?
The confirmation services once a year, in May or November, at Southwark Cathedral.

By when do I have to decide?
Forms are available in church in the summer each year, or can obtained from the Parish Office. They must be returned to the clergy around two months before the confirmation date. The forms for each year give the exact date, which are determined by the start of the six week preparation course.

The Church of England website has further information.

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