An in-law of mine asked me to be her confirmation sponsor. Everyone on both my and my husbands side (except for us) are fallen away Catholics, so we were so thrilled to hear that one of them wants to come back into the Church. I immediately said yes, not thinking about the ramifications of her request. Here’s the problem: she is in a sexual relationship with her boyfriend, uses birth control, and does not currently attend Mass. My husband and I have both expressed to her our feelings on her choices, but she continues to do them as she sees nothing wrong with them. So, although she wants to be confirmed, from what I understand she has no intention of changing other aspects of her life with the possible exception of starting to go to Mass every week.
The Confirmation classes also seem a little bit funny to me - it’s not traditional RCIA. There are only four, two hour meetings before the Confirmation. Maybe this is fine for some who are solid in their faith and are eager to receive this sacrament, but I don’t feel like it’s the right choice for someone who knows little about Catholicism.
So here’s my plan: I think I’m going to write her an email (so I can carefully put together what I want to say) and let her know that while I would love to be her Confirmation sponsor and help her in any way that I can, I don’t feel it’s fair to her or to the Church that she be Confirmed at this point in her life. I would be happy to go to the classes with her, and if she does choose to amend her life by the end then I would happy to sponsor her. If not, I would not go through with being her sponsor.
Does this seem fair? I don’t want to outright say no, because I think it’s a great sign that she wants to become Catholic again. I think she just doesn’t understand what Confirmation is, and isn’t prepared for it. I certainly don’t want to make it seem like she has to be perfect to become Catholic either - I’m afraid of driving her away from the Church again. It seems much more logical to me that she start going to Mass every week, go to confession, and find out if this is really something she wants before she does this four week process.
Am I on track here? I’d love any input!