confirmation question

Does anyone know if it is a rule that you pick a confirmaion saints name to be confirmed? Or is it a diocesan call? thanks

As I understand it, while one is strongly urged to take a confirmation name, there is no obligation to do so.


My youngest brother was just confirmed and this is what they told him. The preference is for the confirmation name to be the same as the baptismal name. For example, if a child was baptized Mary Catherine Jones, the preferred name for her to take for confirmation is Mary.

However, at least where I am from, it has long been the custom for the confirmandi to take new names when they are confirmed. If a confirmand is going to take a new name, it should be a “Christian” name. These names include the names of saints, the names of biblical figures from the Old or the New Testament, etc.

As an aside, the same requirement usually holds true for the baptismal name. Priests will typically not baptize a child by a name that is not a “Christian” name.

[quote=clolds]Does anyone know if it is a rule that you pick a confirmaion saints name to be confirmed? Or is it a diocesan call? thanks

Taking the name of a Saint is common. Its done for the same reasons Religous and even the Holy Father himself take new names upon being ordained or elevated. Indeed, a Patron need not even be a canonized Saint, but need only be ‘on the road’ to canonization. My daughter chose Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha ‘Kateri’ as her Patron.

Some cultures use their confirmation name as part of their legal name. So I’d be Amy Kathleen Paul . . . . (Paul being my saint) and celebrate their saints day as a bigger day than their birthday. I know people who were encouraged to take their same name and regret that, thinking that other saints “fit” them better.

The selection of a confirmation name appears to be a diocesan call. Our diocese encourages it, but my brother in Wisconsin’s does not. So my nieces and nephew do not have Confirmation names but all of our kids do. As a part of selecting their names, they were expected to do research and prepare a report on the significance of their names and the saints who bear the name. Great part of their link with the communion of saints.

Strangely, I haven’t even picked a Confirmation name at all. That was a long time ago, really…

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit