What Do You Think of Confirmation?
This week we’ve been talking a lot about the catechism, particularly as it’s used in confirmation. I’ll mention a few interesting things from the week, but I’d like to ask you some questions this week and get some feedback on confirmation.
The Catechism as an Oral Teaching / Learning Resource:
When Martin Luther wrote the catechism, most people couldn’t read. So, he wrote it to be used primarily orally. So, he wrote it with that in mind including pictures for each of the sections and using several grammatical devices (like assonance, alliteration, rhyming, etc) to make it easier for people to remember. It was intended to be taught orally and memorized. Unfortunately, most of those things have been lost in due to translation and printing costs.
The Catechism as a Handbook, not a Textbook:
Today, we often see the catechism as a textbook. It’s what the kids use in confirmation to learn the material and then it goes on a shelf somewhere. However, that wasn’t actually the intent of the catechism. In the catechism we see how to pray, how to talk about our faith, how to live a life of faith, and so much more. We have things we can turn to when we feel tempted…when we feel beaten down…when we feel excited! The catechism is actually meant for daily use as we celebrate life’s triumphs and face life’s challenges. Maybe it’s time to get your old catechism off the shelf and look through it again?
Some Questions for You:
- There are many ways that confirmation is done. What was your experience in confirmation? Are there any aspects of your confirmation that you thought were particularly good or any that you thought could have been better?
- Do you still ever use your catechism?
- If you have children, have you ever used the catechism with your children?
- Do you think 6th, 7th, and 8th graders are able to understand the theological concepts we teach in confirmation?
Please post your responses and comments in the comments section below. If you would prefer, you can email me your responses or send me a message on Facebook. I look forward to reading your responses.