[quote="notredame_999, post:1, topic:229762"]
I am curious as to the process for confirmation for a Catholic who has gone through first communion, but not formally left the church. I would like to be confirmed this easter. I feel that my knowledge of the church, saints, and theology is at the very least sufficient to a standard confirmation class. I do not want to sit through a year of RICA classes.
Also, I would like my confirmation to be in the way it was done prior to Vatican II. **My first option is not the SSPX, but I will go there if I have to. **Does anyone know of any non-SSPX parishes that offer this traditional confirmation?
Does a priest have to get special permission from a bishop to give a traditional pre-Vatican II confirmation?
The bold is mine.
Through the Sacrament of Confirmation you affirm your faith and your fidelity to the Church, along with the reception of the graces of the Sacrament and the Holy Spirit.
I'm aware that the bishops of the SSPX are good men. However, as you may know, they do not have canonical status in the Catholic Church. This means that they are not authorized to confirm in any diocese.
If you approach a bishop who does not have canonical standing in the Church for the Sacrament of Confirmation, the Confirmation is valid, but ilicit. Both you and the bishop are culpable of violating canon law;. Only bishops with canonical standing can legally confirm.
The bishop is culpable because he is violating a rule. You would be culpable, because you are going to a suspended bishop when there is no canonical need to do so and you know that said bishop has no canonical standing in the Catholic Church. This means that you know that he may not confirm without the permission of the Diocesan Bishop. You know that the Diocesan Bishop is not authorized to grant that permission. Since you know all of this, then you are knowingly violating Church law by allowing yourself to be confirmed by a bishop who does not hae the legal right or authority to do so. Objectively, this creates a moral dilemma for you.
You may not want to go that route, if you're serious about attaining full communion with the Catholic Church. Stay within the law.
I understand that one may prefer the older ritual. If it's available through a bishop who has canonical status, that would be great. If the older ritual is not available, the current ritual is just as valid and legal.
You may want to ask your pastor about your situation. In some dioceses they allow Catholics in situations such as your own to be confirmed at the Easter Vigil. However, this is not automatic. Many dioceses do not allow this. Some bishops reserve Confirmation during the Easter Vigil only for those who are being received into the Church. Everyone else, including an adult Catholic who was never confirmed, must go through Confirmation with the bishop.
You may be allowed to attend classes with the RCIA, but you would not be confirmed with them. You would be confirmed by the Diocesan bishop at a time and place of his choosing.
We Catholics have no choice in this matter. Confirmation is properly the Bishop's sacrament. He decides who can confirm in his diocese. This is where you get into a glitch by asking an SSPX bishop to confirm you. You would be overstepping the authority of the bishop who has jurisdiction over you. The SSPX bishop is not your Ordinary. Your Diocesan Bishop is your Ordinary.
I don't know what they do in FSSP parishes, since the FSSP may not become bishops. MY GUESS is that the local bishop would agree to use the older ritual. That's only my guess.
As far as instruction prior to confirmation, that will depend on two people, you and the pastor. He will tell you his requirements and you agree or not. Again, you need to be careful here too. If you go to a parish that is not your own, the pastor is bound by Canon Law to request permission from your pastor to admit you to the sacraments of Baptism, Matrimony and Confirmation. They usually give you some kind of form to take back to your pastor for him to sign. Most pastors sign it with grace, if you're not going over their head.
It would be a good idea to ask your local pastor if you may go to the local FSSP parish for Confirmation. He will not deny you. They just have a duty to keep track of where their parishioners receive the sacraments.
I hope this helps.
Br. JR, OSF :)