3/8/12

Good news: Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist!

A bishop confirms a child before First Eucharist

I don't know about you but I needed some good news today and, at least in the world where I live and breathe and work - I got some! 

And here it is:

Rome, Italy, Mar 8, 2012 / 03:58 pm (CNA//EWTN News).- Bishop Samuel Aquila of Fargo said he is delighted to have first-hand papal approval for changing the order by which children in his diocese receive the sacraments.

“I was very surprised in what the Pope said to me, in terms of how happy he was that the sacraments of initiation have been restored to their proper order of baptism, confirmation then first Eucharist,” said Bishop Aquila, after meeting Pope Benedict on March 8...

Over the past seven years the Diocese of Fargo has changed the typical order of the sacraments of initiation. Instead of confirmation coming third and at an older age, it is now conferred on children at a younger age and prior to First Communion.

Bishop Aquila said he made the changes because “it really puts the emphasis on the Eucharist as being what completes the sacraments of initiation” and on confirmation as “sealing and completing baptism.”

When the sacraments are conferred in this order, he said, it becomes more obvious that “both baptism and confirmation lead to the Eucharist.” This sacramental assistance helps Catholics live “that intimate relationship of being the beloved sons and daughters of the Father in our daily lives,” he added.

The Bishop of Fargo said the changes have also distanced the Sacrament of Confirmation from “some false theologies that see it as being a sacrament of maturity or as a sacrament for ‘me choosing God.’”

Instead, young people in Fargo now have “the fullness of the spirit and the completion of the gifts of the spirit” to assist them in “living their lives within the world,” especially “in the trials they face in junior high and high school...”

Join me in hoping and praying that this will spread, with the pope's endorsement, all of the U.S.!



 

     
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3 comments:

Shannon said...

I think the diocese of Spokane did this at one time, probably back in the 90s. It makes so much more sense.

In our parish, the candidates for First Communion are recognized at a weekend Mass and given a large scapular (that covers the front and back down to the knees). It will be decorated with their names and symbols of the Eucharist during their preparation. Their recognition and introduction to the parish includes language about their baptisms, and since we've also done something at that liturgy with the catechumens and candidates, the connection of Baptism to Eucharist is obvious--and well celebrated.

Certainly not all three initiation sacraments--and there's still a tendency to lump Reconciliation in there as a pseudo-initiation sacrament--but we're getting there.

Anonymous said...

Amen!

Fr. Gene Vavrick said...

I would love for FDLC to start an official conversation about the restored order of the sacraments. In Region 3, we have been told to not even discuss this issue.