This was a unique year for us, spiritually speaking that is. You see, it just so happens that we have both a 10th grader (#2 of 5) and a 2nd Grader (#5 of 5). In our faith second graders partake in the Sacrament of First Communion (more on that later) and 10th graders partake in the Sacrament of Confirmation.
When this year’s sacramental schedule came out, we quickly discovered a very unique circumstance. #2 of 5’s Confirmation was going to be held on April 21st, and #5 of 5’s First Communion was going to be held on April 22nd… Yup! Back to back!
This was a win in my eyes… See, this way we only had to
clean the houseprepare for a major celebration ONCE!! (Well, it would require a small amount of “touch up” between each event, but not a THUROUGH cleaning like we would have to do if they were months apart.)
The other up-side to having back to back events is that it makes it easier for people who have to travel to justify the trip. It’s a “two-fer”… Two sacramental celebrations for the price of one!
Throughout the past year, #2 of 5 has been preparing for the Sacrament of Confirmation. In its most simplest terms, the candidate selects a Sponsor and together they affirm (or confirm) and strengthen the baptismal vows that were made by the candidate’s parents when they were baptized into the church as an infant.
The Church has some specific criteria that is needed to fulfill the roll of Confirmation Sponsor, and to be quite honest, we were quite interested to see who #2 of 5 would choose for his candidate. We did not interfere, or direct him in any way.
When the time came to choose a sponsor, #2 of 5 came to us with an idea. Not only did he have an idea, but he has some very specific reasoning for that idea. #2 of 5 chose my sister’s husband (my brother in law). I was quite surprised… Surprised and (to be honest) very proud of his choice!
There was one small snag. Uncle A lives over one thousand miles away. We talked through this and what it would mean, then we talked to the Spiritual Director for the Confirmation program, explaining his choice and our plan on how to make this work.
She spoke with our Parish Priest (Fr. Yanta, whom I have blogged about here in the past – we are quite blessed to have him as our Parish Priest!) who gave her (and us) his blessing. #2 of 5 made the telephone call and asked Uncle A to spend a few days considering the offer.
A few days later Uncle A called back and told #2 of 5 that he has agreed to accept the roll! There were a few logistical complications, but we did have a plan for that. (I would step in, and fulfill the roll of Sponsor for the Candidate / Sponsor events, and then follow up with Uncle A and fill him in with what had gone on.)
This worked out very well. In fact, throughout the year I think #2 of 5 and Uncle A’s relationship strengthen significantly! They bonded on several different levels, and #2 of 5 introduced Uncle A into a whole new means of communication… TEXTING!!
I often found #2 of 5 texting Uncle A, or Uncle A texting #2 of 5.
Having talked to each of them about their interactions, I quickly ascertained that they both enjoyed, and learned a little throughout the experience! I could not be more thankful to Uncle A’s for having been there for #2 of 5!
The day of the Confirmation arrived. The Sacrament was being held at Divine Mercy Catholic Church in Faribault, Minnesota. The Sacrament was officiated by the Bishop and assisted by the Priests of the 3-4 Parishes who’s youth were being confirmed.
After the ceremony, we all returned to the house where we had a Lasagna dinner feast. (#2 of 5 was allowed to select what dinner would be.)
Whether or not he realizes it, he made a big impression on his nephew!! We are very grateful to Uncle A for his commitment to #2 of 5.