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  #1  
Old Mar 6, '12, 7:31 am
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onjac onjac is offline
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Default Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

I have a bit of a unusual situation. My mother and I aren't Catholics but my father is. My family talked to our parish and they're not just allowing us to be baptised but confirmed as well. Now, our family doesn't have any Catholic friends and our Catholic relatives live abroad. One of the elderly Sisters said that it should be alright to have my father act as the confirmation sponsor for both of us.

I didn't say anything about it at the time but from what I understand, a parent cannot be a confirmation sponsor.

I know this is kind of a stupid question since I'm going to look for a new sponsor anyways but there should be no way of getting around this because of canon law, correct? So if sponsor was my parent, then would that mean my confirmation was technically invalid? And has it always been the case of having a non-parent as a confirmation sponsor?

Last edited by onjac; Mar 6, '12 at 7:43 am.
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  #2  
Old Mar 6, '12, 8:09 am
Cathryn Cathryn is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

Quote:
I have a bit of a unusual situation. My mother and I aren't Catholics but my father is. My family talked to our parish and they're not just allowing us to be baptised but confirmed as well. Now, our family doesn't have any Catholic friends and our Catholic relatives live abroad. One of the elderly Sisters said that it should be alright to have my father act as the confirmation sponsor for both of us.

I didn't say anything about it at the time but from what I understand, a parent cannot be a confirmation sponsor.

I know this is kind of a stupid question since I'm going to look for a new sponsor anyways but there should be no way of getting around this because of canon law, correct? So if sponsor was my parent, then would that mean my confirmation was technically invalid? And has it always been the case of having a non-parent as a confirmation sponsor?
If you are close to your Catholic relatives abroad, and they are practicing Catholics, ask one or two of them to be sponsor and all you will need is a proxy to stand in for them. I hope this helps. Canon Law does not allow you to use a parent.
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  #3  
Old Mar 6, '12, 9:58 am
Castello Castello is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

Your relatives abroad may be your sponsors, they will have a proxy stand in.

Also look in the parish for wonderful examples of the Faith.
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  #4  
Old Mar 6, '12, 10:14 am
superamazingman superamazingman is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

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Originally Posted by Castello View Post
Also look in the parish for wonderful examples of the Faith.
Yes, I'd ask your RCIA director or pastor.
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  #5  
Old Mar 6, '12, 11:41 am
1ke 1ke is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

You are correct, your parent cannot be your sponsor.
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  #6  
Old Mar 6, '12, 12:09 pm
Anna Claire Anna Claire is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

Who will be your baptism godparent? If you are a catechumen seeking full initiation into the Catholic Church—Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist—your godparent(s) for Baptism (at the Easter Vigil?) should also be your sponsor(s) for Confirmation.
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  #7  
Old Mar 6, '12, 12:11 pm
YoungCanRCMale YoungCanRCMale is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

Quote:
Originally Posted by onjac View Post
I have a bit of a unusual situation. My mother and I aren't Catholics but my father is. My family talked to our parish and they're not just allowing us to be baptised but confirmed as well. Now, our family doesn't have any Catholic friends and our Catholic relatives live abroad. One of the elderly Sisters said that it should be alright to have my father act as the confirmation sponsor for both of us.

I didn't say anything about it at the time but from what I understand, a parent cannot be a confirmation sponsor.

I know this is kind of a stupid question since I'm going to look for a new sponsor anyways but there should be no way of getting around this because of canon law, correct? So if sponsor was my parent, then would that mean my confirmation was technically invalid? And has it always been the case of having a non-parent as a confirmation sponsor?
Does your Parish have a thriving youth ministry? I think as long as they are 16 years of age (like a baptismal godparent) they could be the person's sponsor. My parish's youth ministry has let youth ministry members be sponsors for RCIA candidates that do not have anyone outside family or suitable to do it. In fact it brought to us another young man into our ministry too thanks to the awesome sponsorship of our youth ministry member (and he's very devout! He's even completing an overseas Catholic youth mission in Asia!). You could keep in touch with the person and they could serve as a role model for them and both of you could learn and carry out the mission of the faith properly together!
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  #8  
Old Mar 6, '12, 12:27 pm
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MissRose73 MissRose73 is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

I've been a Sponsor / Godparent to each of my sister's children when they were received into the Church at Easter Vigil. She picked me (along with our aunt & uncle to share the role for the children) as I am Catholic and set a good example as one.

I knew when I was confirmed that I could not pick a parent. That was emphasized by the catechist the year I was confirmed both during classes with my peers and later meetings where a parent & the sponsor attended with us. I did not know many in my family close by to me that were practicing Catholics at the time, and chose my Aunt who was also my Godmother at Baptism as I knew for a fact she fit the criteria. My sister (who now no longer goes to Mass regularly) picked a good friend's mother who is also a practicing Catholic for her Confirmation sponsor.
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  #9  
Old Mar 6, '12, 1:44 pm
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onjac onjac is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anna Claire View Post
Who will be your baptism godparent? If you are a catechumen seeking full initiation into the Catholic Church—Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist—your godparent(s) for Baptism (at the Easter Vigil?) should also be your sponsor(s) for Confirmation.
I don't have a godparent. But good point. I should be thinking about that too since of course, Baptism comes first.


Quote:
Originally Posted by YoungCanRCMale View Post
Does your Parish have a thriving youth ministry? I think as long as they are 16 years of age (like a baptismal godparent) they could be the person's sponsor. My parish's youth ministry has let youth ministry members be sponsors for RCIA candidates that do not have anyone outside family or suitable to do it. In fact it brought to us another young man into our ministry too thanks to the awesome sponsorship of our youth ministry member (and he's very devout! He's even completing an overseas Catholic youth mission in Asia!). You could keep in touch with the person and they could serve as a role model for them and both of you could learn and carry out the mission of the faith properly together!

I don't know actually. The parish I originally went to had a youth ministry but it's (extremely) inconvenient for me to go there so I go to the one in my hometown for individualized RCIA lessons. Tbh, I don't think this parish actually has an RCIA program at all. I've been to this parish many times before and I've seen young children and seniors. But I don't recall seeing anybody my age over there.

But yeah, I should ask around for it.
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  #10  
Old Mar 6, '12, 6:25 pm
Joe Kelley Joe Kelley is online now
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

Quote:
Originally Posted by onjac View Post
...r.

I know this is kind of a stupid question since I'm going to look for a new sponsor anyways but there should be no way of getting around this because of canon law, correct? So if sponsor was my parent, then would that mean my confirmation was technically invalid? And has it always been the case of having a non-parent as a confirmation sponsor?
Quote:
SPONSORS
Can. 892 Insofar as possible, there is to be a sponsor for the person to be confirmed; the sponsor is to take care that the confirmed person behaves as a true witness of Christ and faithfully fulfills the obligations inherent in this sacrament.
Can. 893 §1. To perform the function of sponsor, a person must fulfill the conditions mentioned in can. 874.
§2. It is desirable to choose as sponsor the one who undertook the same function in baptism.
I read this to say that while one should have a sponsor it is not critical to the validity of the sacrament.

Quote:
Can. 874 §1. To be permitted to take on the function of sponsor a person must:
1/ be designated by the one to be baptized, by the parents or the person who takes their place, or in their absence by the pastor or minister and have the aptitude and intention of fulfilling this function;
2/ have completed the sixteenth year of age, unless the diocesan bishop has established another age, or the pastor or minister has granted an exception for a just cause;
3/ be a Catholic who has been confirmed and has already received the most holy sacrament of the Eucharist and who leads a life of faith in keeping with the function to be taken on;
4/ not be bound by any canonical penalty legitimately imposed or declared;
5/ not be the father or mother of the one to be baptized.
As I recall the older Canon Law was stricter. It also forbid spouses to be sponsors. This was sometimes a problem because being a sponsor became an impediment to marriage. this is no longer the case in the Western Church. I am not sure about the East.
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  #11  
Old Mar 7, '12, 5:01 am
Anna Claire Anna Claire is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

"I don't have a godparent. But good point. I should be thinking about that too since of course, Baptism comes first."

Actually you should be thinking about Baptism first. Confirmation is a deepening of the gifts given to us at Baptism. What about Eucharist? Are you preparing for all three sacraments of initiation?
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  #12  
Old Mar 7, '12, 8:24 am
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onjac onjac is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anna Claire View Post
"I don't have a godparent. But good point. I should be thinking about that too since of course, Baptism comes first."

Actually you should be thinking about Baptism first. Confirmation is a deepening of the gifts given to us at Baptism. What about Eucharist? Are you preparing for all three sacraments of initiation?
From what I talked with the Sister, I am preparing for all 3 sacraments of Initiation but we had to rush to Mass the last time we talked so our conversation was mostly focused on the first two. Does this change anything as to what I should be planning right now?
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  #13  
Old Mar 7, '12, 2:43 pm
Phemie Phemie is online now
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

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Originally Posted by onjac View Post
From what I talked with the Sister, I am preparing for all 3 sacraments of Initiation but we had to rush to Mass the last time we talked so our conversation was mostly focused on the first two. Does this change anything as to what I should be planning right now?
If it's done the traditional way you will be baptized, confirmed and receive Communion for the first time all in the same ceremony at the Easter Vigil. You need a sponsor (godparent) for Baptism and the same person is with you for Confirmation since it's done almost immediately after.
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  #14  
Old Mar 7, '12, 3:03 pm
Anna Claire Anna Claire is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

Yes...what Phemie says is correct. How exciting for you!! The Easter Vigil isn't that far away. Don't feel pressured because you can receive the sacraments at any point after Easter. Better to be sure and be prepared properly. Talk to Sister more about what is expected.
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  #15  
Old Mar 7, '12, 3:55 pm
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onjac onjac is offline
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Default Re: Parent as a Confirmation Sponsor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phemie View Post
If it's done the traditional way you will be baptized, confirmed and receive Communion for the first time all in the same ceremony at the Easter Vigil. You need a sponsor (godparent) for Baptism and the same person is with you for Confirmation since it's done almost immediately after.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anna Claire View Post
Yes...what Phemie says is correct. How exciting for you!! The Easter Vigil isn't that far away. Don't feel pressured because you can receive the sacraments at any point after Easter. Better to be sure and be prepared properly. Talk to Sister more about what is expected.


I almost forgot that it's going to be done in the same ceremony. Hope I don't panic since it will be close to Finals week.

But it's so exciting!!! I can't wait!!!

Thanks so much everybody!
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