I’ve just come back from leading a confirmation retreat for some 30 teenagers (mostly GCSE and A-level students) who are preparing for their confirmation the week after Easter.
As most of you most probably know, confirmation is a step along the Christian journey joined-at-the-hip to our baptism or christening.
We declare publicly that this journey is for us and the bishop prays for us, anointing us with the same oil of blessing used at our baptism.
The bishop prays for us that God will confirm in us what has already begun with the his Holy Spirit.
We often use the term “christening” — literally “being made like Christ” to refer to baptism, and that’s what is going on in confirmation too.
During the retreat, we looked at three parts of the Christian journey that we carry with us — that we are beloved by God, on how God forgives us as we turn to him, and on how God sustains us, both through ordinary and holy things — along with plenty of space for each person to engage with what that means for them.
Perhaps that too should be something we can all do to, as Lent draws to a close and Easter bursts upon us — reflect on the fact that we are beloved, forgiven as we turn, and sustained though ordinary and holy things ourselves, and so discover more of God’s presence with us.
Yours, as ever,