I have been a CCD/PSR/Religious Education teacher for close to 20 years and this year I am teaching a tenth grade class. We confirm at the end of tenth grade here(after moving the age back three times in seven years!) I have many kids in my class who openly express their distaste for our religion. They brag that they don’t attend Mass (even when Mass is right before the class) and have a very poor understanding of Catholicism. (This is my second year teaching most of them and the program has been going thru a tough few years as the church tries to start up Lifeteen instead of small group classroom teaching.) While I try to teach/explain our religion and answer their questions, many of them do not attend the classes (like come to 50% of the classes) we only meet about 10 times thru the year.
My question is this: Should they all be Confirmed and leave it to the Holy Spirit to enrich them as they grow older? Give it to God and let the Fruits of the Holy Spirit do his thing?
Or should only the “believers” or practicing Catholics be Confirmed?
I really cant decide…on one hand I want everyone to receive the graces of God, but on the other hand it really kinda cheapens the Sacrament for the kids who do believe and practice the faith.
I have spoken to our Pastor (he is old, but new to our parish, liberal. I got into lots of trouble last year because I told the kids it was a Mortal sin to miss Mass without a good reason o. I since have backed down on what I teach and pretty much just follow what I am given and avoid any mention of sin. Father feels that might offend kids.) I think he believes all should be Confirmed.
I know its not my decision to make but…Can you guys give me some advice? I keep praying but I just don’t know what to do. I really like the kids and I don’t want anyone to leave the faith…