Varying fees for confirmation from parish to parish

*My dd is going to be taking her religious ed classes within our new parish, that we joined several months ago. I didn’t sign her up last year at our previous parish, as I didn’t sense reverence at the mass, and thus as a family, we thought of changing parishes. Lo and behold we did, this year. That said, she is going to be confirmed next spring. I picked up a registration form yesterday after mass, and I couldn’t believe it…only $25 for the classes!
Back in PA, they were $65, and to me, it was a waste–while I loved the nuns who ran the program, they were seldom instructing the lessons, and you cannot even believe what some of the teachers were ‘teaching.’ :mad: Let’s just say, they were not teaching the Catholic faith as they should, seemed like they were watering down the message.

So…here’s the interesting thing. The parish I belong to now, is just blossoming. We don’t even have an actual church building yet! But, we are such a close knit group already…and it amazes me that religious ed is so inexpensive! Back in PA, and other parishes, the charges seemed higher, and the congregations were larger. I am taken aback, is all–in a good way. At first, I thought well, maybe this group of kids will be blended with another larger parish, but nope. I was told we are having our own religious ed classes! :extrahappy:

I just wanted to share that with you. Is just a head scratcher as to why fully formed parishes that have been ong standing in communities, are charging more than this one. :o*

*Oh, and here’s another great thing…it states on the form…you must be a registered member AND a practicing member. Now, of course, there are circumstances which causes adults not to be able to make mass, but I think the form sends a message that you have to practice your faith and we can only do so much…true faith formation should be taking place at home, and if kids don’t see their parents attending mass on a REGULAR basis, what will propel them to do so when they grow older? I thought it was a very interesting “expectation” of this parish. *

You are a business woman Sharon, you understand this. Part of it is of course the actual costs–books, etc. Your parish in PA may have had higher costs because they included expenses for a retreat or something like that along with books, electricity, heat, etc. Part of it has to do with ‘what the market will bear’, now I’m not saying that any parish is actually *making *money off the confirmation/religious ed program, but in some areas they may not be able to charge enough to cover all actual expenses. Since your new parish is a mission church, they may still be receiving money from the diocese to help with all parish expenses. The DRE and Pastor probably decided that it was better to ask for less from each family and cover more of the costs out of the regular offering. Also, the program may not include as much stuff–ie, they may be using shared copies of books rather than each child getting their own, there may not be a retreat (or it may have a separate fee), or they may not be providing snacks or a confirmation day reception.

As I said, I doubt any parish is using the confirmation program as a money maker, but until you know exactly what is included in the different programs you can’t really compare. (Also, I bet anything that utlity costs are much higher in PA.)

*You know, you’re right…I hadn’t thought of that…from a business standpoint. I wonder if because the group of kids at this point is very small, if that is partially the reason. There are not a lot of teens within this parish…I am so glad to have found it though. It is what the Catholic mass was created to be. I didn’t like the other parishes, they were trying too hard to make mass a performance. :rolleyes:

The thing I was trying to convey above though, is that at our parish in PA, when my kids went to classes…the duration of class was shorter than this one AND they didn’t have ANY books. I know that sounds shocking, or whatever…they didn’t. They did puzzles, and had some class instruction…and again, the class instruction was much to be desired. I actually had to call the nun running the entire program to voice my concern. (even though I adored our PA parish) :frowning:

You are right though–until I see what the kids are getting, it will be hard to compare, but if it’s a smidge more than PA, it will be an improvement! :o
I am excited…we’re heading into unchartered territory! :bounce:*

You have to pay to get comfirmed!? No one ever told me that!

There is no fee for the sacrament. There is a fee for the instruction classes.

Do you mean ICRA?

I think you mean RCIA, Jennifer. It stands for the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. Remembering what it stands for will probably make it easier for you to remember the letters.

Regarding fees. As far as I know, there are no charges for either Confirmation or RCIA classes in the UK. The other posters are talking about the situation in USA.

And even if there are charges, most parishes will work with you if you can’t afford the cost.

A bigger issue than variable Confirmation “costs” is the variable wedding fees. Parishes around here range from donation only to $2500 in the same diocese. The nearest cathedral is thousands of dollars and has to be booked years in advance.

Your new parish does sound wonderful. Glad your daughter will be getting a great expereince leading up to confirmation. I love our program here, but man! is it a production. We have over 1000 kids in the k-8 CCD (not including the kids at the parish school). It is a major undertaking each year! Our DRE is a rock! The best ever and we are so grateful to have her running this amazing program.

RCIA… :blush:

I’ve typed it so many times, I should be able to remember it by now. [edited]

My parish doesn’t have any fee for the RCIA. And we give the attendees several instruction books, a Catechism of the Catholic Church, and a Bible! I’m not sure if there are any fees for materials in the PSR or in the Confirmation classes for high schoolers, but I don’t think so.

Hmm, I’m just wondewring… but why do the catholic churches not have bibles at mass?

No, RCIA doesn’t cost anything. It didn’t when I went through two years ago, and it shouldn’t now.

Actually, they do. There should be little books in the pews called missals that have the day’s readings in them. If you want to bring a Bible to the Liturgy, though, you’re free to do so.

*:blush: Yes, thanks Jim. This is what I meant. *

Some confirmation groups do more than others. They often have retreats, food, lesson materials, and transportation to retreats & other special events (and the fees that may go with them) that the whole church can’t just foot the bill for (some churches can though- and do). If I had kids, the expense would be worth it to me to give my kids a good time while preparing for confirmation, if the faith formation was solid. It would sure beat just sitting in a classroom to hear a lecture for ANOTHER day of the week.

Why do parishes charge a fee for doing sacraments like baptism, first holy communion, and other things? Arent they supposed to be free? Its something that all catholics have to do. What if they don’t have any money but need to baptize? Rather than fees, maybe they should do donations.

I have never heard of a parish charging to do a baptism or first Holy Communion. It seems to be custom to give the priest some sort of offering for the baptism, but it is definitely not required (at least where we had our son baptized).

Parishes do charge for the use of the church for a wedding, which seems reasonable when you invite 300+ people. But you can get married at a pre-scheduled mass for free, or at least you should be able to.

It can seem like the Church is charging for sacraments, but it is usually a fee for exclusive use of the church building for a large gathering.

There are basic costs that have to be paid for associated with the Sacraments. Education materials,candles, electricity etc

If someone truly cannot afford to give the suggested fee then of course there would be no charge.

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