We look at our Confirmation, if we recall it at all, as a maturing in the faith. Like we have become adults in the faith. After all, we no longer are required to go to catechism classes. We graduated from Catholic formation, or so we think. And while Confirmation does involve us maturing in our faith, there is so much more to Confirmation that we need to live out everyday afterwards.
At Confirmation, the bishop, or in special circumstances a priest, lays hands upon us. And while this is very biblical, there is a reality that this brings about. We do not just do it because it is in the Bible, we do it because of the power it confers as indicated in the Bible. We do not do it just because it was done in the Bible, but because the Bible shows the power it brings. Otherwise, it would simply be a kind gesture.
But what is the power that Confirmation confers to us? “Then they laid hands on them and they received the holy Spirit.” [Acts 8:17] While we become sons and daughters of God at baptism, we do not have the power of the Holy Spirit without Confirmation. The verse in Acts immediately before attests to it. “[F]or [the Holy Spirit] had not yet fallen upon any of them; they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.”
And how do we know Confirmation actually does this through the laying on of hands? The verse in Acts after shows a man willing to pay for this same power. “When Simon saw that the Spirit was conferred by the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money.” Indeed, the power was very evident to those who saw it.
When we live in the power of the Holy Spirit from our Confirmation, we are participating in Pentacost. That is when the Holy Spirit first came down to give Jesus’ followers power. Pentacost never ended. It just merely changed forms, which we are able to live in. But do we see the power it brings or simply think it was a nice gesture for picture taking.
Jesus, send forth Your Holy Spirit upon us, and let the power of the Holy Spirit flow through us to set the world on fire for love of You. Amen.