“…[T]he apostles, in fulfillment of Christ's will, imparted to the newly baptized by the laying on of hands the gift of the Spirit that completes the grace of Baptism. For this reason in the Letter to the Hebrews the doctrine concerning Baptism and the laying on of hands is listed among the first elements of Christian instruction. The imposition of hands is rightly recognized by the Catholic tradition as the origin of the sacrament of Confirmation, which in a certain way perpetuates the grace of Pentecost in the Church.
“Very early, the better to signify the gift of the Holy Spirit, an anointing with perfumed oil (chrism) was added to the laying on of hands. This anointing highlights the name 'Christian,' which means 'anointed' and derives from that of Christ himself whom God 'anointed with the Holy Spirit.' This rite of anointing has continued ever since, in both East and West. For this reason the Eastern Churches call this sacrament Chrismation, anointing with chrism, or myron which means “chrism.” In the West, the term Confirmation suggests that this sacrament both confirms Baptism and strengthens baptismal grace” (CCC 1288-1289).
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LOVE the Word® is a Bible study method based on Mary's own practice: lectio without the Latin. Get the book based on Sonja's method in the right margin, How to Pray Like Mary.
L – Listen (Receive the Word.)
O – Observe (Connect the passage to your life and recent events.)
Part of the grace of confirmation is the grace to overcome our human pettiness, our cowardice in the face of human opinion, our fearfulness of sacrifice, and the ability to give an authentic witness to Christ through an apostolate (ministry). In which of these areas are you strong? In which are you weak and in need of strength?
V – Verbalize (Pray about your thoughts and emotions.)
What does the Lord want you to do now? What do you want to say to Him?
Remembering that He loves you and that you are in His presence, talk to God about the particulars of your O – Observe step. You may want to write your reflections in your LOVE the Word® journal. Or, get a free journal page and guide in the right-hand margin.
E – Entrust (May it be done to me according to your word!)
God of Grace, I informally reconfirm my faith today as a small token of my love for You, for You are holy. I will serve you faithfully, and I reject anything that I hold in my heart above You. I will serve You and follow You, Lord, wholeheartedly, for the rest of my days (Joshua 23:11,14). Amen +
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