The Sacrament of Confirmation
It is not easy to live as a good Christian in this modern world. To help us we receive special graces in the Sacrament of Confirmation. This is defined as the Sacrament through which we receive the Holy Spirit to make us strong and perfect Christians.
The Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit strengthen us in the profession of our faith, help us to overcome difficulties and guide us in the path of holiness and faithfulness to the end of our lives. The seven Gifts are necessary for salvation; they enable us to act correctly in our spiritual life, and to bring our actions into line with God’s own standards of conduct. We are reminded that we are soldiers of Jesus Christ.
It is good to remind ourselves of the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit:
- Wisdom enables us to consider the eternal truths and to judge all things by them, focusing on salvation by using our intellect and talents.
- Understanding is the power of penetrating the hidden meaning of the great spiritual truths.
- Counsel is the power to make prudent decisions about matters concerning God and salvation, and readiness to do Will of God.
- Fortitude gives us courage to profess the Faith, and firmness of soul in bearing difficulties. It makes us patient and steadfast in our trials and temptations.
- Knowledge helps us to see and use temporal (earthly) things in accordance with our hope of salvation, without becoming too attached to them.
- Piety is the desire to serve God.
- Fear of the Lord is the reverence of a son for his father, uniting him with the love of God.
The Fruits of the Holy Spirit are: Charity, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Longanimity (long life), Mildness, Faith, Modesty, Continency (self-control) and Chastity. These are infused into our souls by the Holy Spirit so that we rejoice to be with God and work to bring him to others.
Each year the Parish holds a Confirmation course for young people between the ages of 13 and 16 years. They must be baptised Catholics, or have been received into the Catholic Church as converts and have made their First Holy Communion. The group meets regularly throughout the year and covers all topics of the Catholic faith with an emphasis on the Holy Spirit. Towards the end of the course the groups from the Havant Pastoral Area come together for a day of Retreat shortly before the Confirmation ceremony.