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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

CONFIRMATION CANDIDATE & SPONSOR RECOLLECTION: WALKING TOGETHER

Reported by Evelyn Jock


The English Sunday School organised a Confirmation Candidate and Sponsor half-day Recollection for the first time, on 6 May 2017 with the theme “Walking Together”. The programme started with a morning mass at 8:30 am in the St. Mary’s Cathedral chapel, which was celebrated by Bishop Julius.  There was a good turnout of Confirmation Candidates with their respective parents and sponsors, facilitators and English Sunday School catechists.
The His Reverend Bishop Julius Dusin Gitom, in reference to John’s Gospel (6:60-69) quoted as saying after the mass, “Lord, who shall we go to? You have the words of eternal life” expresses his hope in the Confirmation Candidates, parents and a sponsors’ commitment to the Catholic faith despite all the trials and challenges we face in the secular world today.
After the mass, Bishop Julius gave a briefing to all those present at the Chapel that morning.  He expressed his joy and mentioned that the participants were privileged to be participating in the Confirmation Candidate and Sponsor half day recollection which was conducted for the very first time.  He stressed that the St Mary’s Cathedral takes the role of a sponsor seriously and that the participants are fully committed as they journey in their faith even after being Confirmed which is scheduled in November 2017.
After breakfast at the parish canteen, FSIC Sr. Lillian Unsoh delivered an interesting talk on the history and meaning of Confirmation; how it strengthens one’s faith to become a disciple of Jesus and entrusted to proclaim the gospel to the ends of the world. She likened the Holy Spirit, which is in every one of us, to sugar in coffee that needs to be stirred so that the coffee is sweet. On being a confirmed member of the church, we too need to stir up (rekindle) the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  She also highlighted on the family as a domestic church and the role of parents as the primary catechists of their children and also went on to stress on who can be a sponsor and the role expected of a person who has agreed to be a Sponsor to a Confirmation Candidate.  The journey of mentoring and faith exploration that a Sponsor and candidate undertake do not end at the Sacrament of Confirmation mass, but the journey will be ‘forever’.  The half-day recollection ended at about 1pm with a fellowship lunch.  

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