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  #1  
Old Apr 6, '08, 10:05 am
jonnyws jonnyws is offline
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Default Why first communion before confirmation

This is something that is bugging me as I feel it should be the other way round.

Can anyone explain why we recieve first Holy Communion before we are confirmed. It makes more sence to me that we are confirmed first.
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  #2  
Old Apr 6, '08, 10:26 am
Phemie Phemie is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

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Originally Posted by jonnyws View Post
This is something that is bugging me as I feel it should be the other way round.

Can anyone explain why we recieve first Holy Communion before we are confirmed. It makes more sence to me that we are confirmed first.
You're right, it would make more sense, since only the fully initiated should receive Communion. That's the way it was until 1910, but Communion was often delayed until the teens or adulthood. Then, Pius X announced that children could receive Communion at the age of reason (generally 7, but there seems to be evidence that Pius X himself gave Communion to a 4 year old). Because Bishops often didn't visit parishes each year to confer the sacrament of confirmation, this younger age for communion in effect reversed the order of the sacraments of initiation which went from baptism/confirmation/communion to baptism/communion/confirmation. That has been changed in many dioceses in the last decade or so.

Canon Law says confirmation at the age of reason (again the age of 7 is mentioned) but that bishops can decide another age for their diocese. Canon Law also says that children who are baptized in danger of death should also be confirmed, so there is not as much required for confirmation as for receiving Communion. Pushing back the age of confirmation has flawed our understanding of the sacrament, where it has become more about what the teens do to receive it than about what the sacrament does to the teens. I honestly don't see where the Church universal requires 3 years of preparation for Confirmation the way it is in many dioceses.
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  #3  
Old Apr 6, '08, 10:49 am
cothrige cothrige is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

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Originally Posted by jonnyws View Post
This is something that is bugging me as I feel it should be the other way round.

Can anyone explain why we recieve first Holy Communion before we are confirmed. It makes more sence to me that we are confirmed first.
IMHO, this is one thing the East has always had right. The most logical thing would be to baptise, confirm and communicate at the same time. I have never understood why we withhold the sacraments from young people.

Patrick
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  #4  
Old Apr 6, '08, 10:53 am
jonnyws jonnyws is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

As far as I understand it the whole point of seperating out Baptism, Confirmation and Communion to span over a period of time was so that a person could grow in grace and love of Christ and move towards recieving His Body and Blood with a greater knowledge and love.

It makes no sense to impart a Christ like character onto someone in the sacrament of confirmation when they have already reached the zeneth of the Christian mystery in the sacrament of the Eucharist. It's like trying to turn the key's in a car ignition when you've been driving for the last half hour.
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  #5  
Old Apr 6, '08, 11:10 am
Phemie Phemie is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

Confirmation was separated from baptism early on, when priests were given the faculty to baptize but bishops kept Confirmation for themselves to confer. It still happened before Communion though until less than a century ago.
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  #6  
Old Apr 6, '08, 1:17 pm
OutinChgoburbs OutinChgoburbs is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

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Originally Posted by cothrige View Post
IMHO, this is one thing the East has always had right. The most logical thing would be to baptise, confirm and communicate at the same time. I have never understood why we withhold the sacraments from young people.

Patrick
I quite agree. I have agreed for a long time.
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  #7  
Old Apr 6, '08, 2:23 pm
Tracy07 Tracy07 is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

In our diocese it is explained that the sacraments are separate so that each person has time to appreciate and prepare for each sacrament individually, that each sacrament is special in their own way and should have their own separate celebration also that in young children espescially it can be quite overwhelming so best not to overwhelm them completely with too many things at once..
As i have just been welcomed in at easter i had all my sacraments received together but then i had around a year to 18 months to be prepared for them.
x
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  #8  
Old Apr 6, '08, 2:32 pm
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jmcrae jmcrae is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

I have always thought that, given that we baptize infants, that the other Sacraments (First Reconciliation, Confirmation, and First Holy Communion) should all be given in the same year, when the child is about ten years old. This is old enough to understand what is going on, without having reached an age of cynicism or outright rebellion, yet.

It could be done in the same way that Candidates for RCIA are received, with Sacramental Preparation taking place throughout the year, and then First Reconciliation during the period before the Initiation Mass, and then Confirmation and First Holy Communion at the Initiation Mass.

Or, it could be done in sequence, with First Reconciliation being completed during Advent, and then Confirmation and First Holy Communion being completed during the Lent/Easter period, with Confirmation occuring during April/May/June (depending upon the availability of the Bishop) and First Holy Communion taking place on Corpus Christi Sunday (assuming that Corpus Christi Sunday is after the date of Confirmation).
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  #9  
Old Apr 6, '08, 2:35 pm
Phemie Phemie is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

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Originally Posted by Tracy07 View Post
In our diocese it is explained that the sacraments are separate so that each person has time to appreciate and prepare for each sacrament individually, that each sacrament is special in their own way and should have their own separate celebration also that in young children espescially it can be quite overwhelming so best not to overwhelm them completely with too many things at once..
As i have just been welcomed in at easter i had all my sacraments received together but then i had around a year to 18 months to be prepared for them.
x
It's a nice explanation but many dioceses have returned the sacraments of initiation to their original order and the children celebrate Confirmation then First Communion in the same liturgy.

Confirmation is not a sacrament of maturity or commitment to the Church. It's about what the Holy Spirit does, not what we do. That's why in the Catholic Church one need not even be aware that one is receiving it. Such is not the case with Communion, at least in the Latin Rite.
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  #10  
Old Apr 6, '08, 2:51 pm
BamaRider BamaRider is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

In the ideal world, I prefer the order I recieved. Infant Baptism, Communion at age 6 afer a year of intense instruction and Catechism, and Confirmation at age 11.

Even though I was only 6, I was fully aware of the Lord's presence in the Eucharist. I knew what was going, and couldnt' wait for spring to arrive to receive. It was the focal point of our entire 1st grade. The Sisters had a enormous responsiblity not only teaching us to read and write, but the Faith. I also made my first Confession the week prior to Communion.

The Sisters at the Christ The King spent the next 3 years, preparing us for Confirmation, helping us grow spritually and in the Faith.
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  #11  
Old Apr 6, '08, 3:58 pm
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SMHW SMHW is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnyws View Post
This is something that is bugging me as I feel it should be the other way round.

Can anyone explain why we recieve first Holy Communion before we are confirmed. It makes more sence to me that we are confirmed first.

And even for most of the time during which Confirmation was separated off from baptism (in the Western Church), Confirmation preceded Holy Eucharist.

Holy Eucharist prior to Confirmation is fairly recent, in "Church time".
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  #12  
Old Apr 6, '08, 5:39 pm
Phemie Phemie is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

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Originally Posted by SMHW View Post
And even for most of the time during which Confirmation was separated off from baptism (in the Western Church), Confirmation preceded Holy Eucharist.

Holy Eucharist prior to Confirmation is fairly recent, in "Church time".
98 years to be exact.
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  #13  
Old Apr 7, '08, 2:03 am
Tracy07 Tracy07 is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phemie View Post
It's a nice explanation but many dioceses have returned the sacraments of initiation to their original order and the children celebrate Confirmation then First Communion in the same liturgy.

Confirmation is not a sacrament of maturity or commitment to the Church. It's about what the Holy Spirit does, not what we do. That's why in the Catholic Church one need not even be aware that one is receiving it. Such is not the case with Communion, at least in the Latin Rite.
On reading the catechism book father gave to me at my welcoming i found this quote
" It is through the grace of confirmation that the christian can fully make his OWN the grace of baptism. That is why confirmation is generally administered to adolescents as the 'sacrament of christian maturity'
The candidates for confirmation say 'yes ' to christ and profess their readiness to stand up for the church and to stand by their brothers and sisters in their faith"
I dont think theres any plans to return the sacraments to their original order in our parish as i think everyone is happy with the way things are done here, everyone is of course different as are parishes its just a different way of doing things and this way works for us.
x
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  #14  
Old Apr 7, '08, 6:54 am
OutinChgoburbs OutinChgoburbs is offline
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Default Re: Why first communion before confirmation

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Originally Posted by Phemie View Post
98 years to be exact.
In Church time, a speck on the ball...Nothing at all, at all...
**************************************** ***********************
SEGUE
**************************************** ***********************
For the OP, who is confused, and those who think Confirmation is not the sealing of Baptism and the action of the bishop...

...Here is Canon Law on Confirmation, directly from the Vatican web site. It is interesting to note that Confirmation is listed immediately after Baptism. It is also interesting that Canon 891 states "age of discretion" for the Latin Rite, which is about 7, and gives the bishop the go-ahead to set up a different age.

...Here is the Canon Law on the Eucharist.

...And here is the Cathechism in English from the USCCB on the Sacraments of Initiation.
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