I had the privilege of being the Episcopal advisor to the five-year, ecumenical, Lilly Endowment Inc.-funded study, The Confirmation Project to learn the extent to which confirmation and equivalent practices are effective for strengthening discipleship in youth. Now it is time to put the findings into practice.
Enter the Confirmation Collaborative of the Episcopal Church, a diverse group of Christian formation leaders representing all orders of ministry, and co-sponsored by VTS and Church Publishing Incorporated! We believe, and the research confirms, that confirmation is the claiming of baptism and an invitation to a life of deeper discipleship lived in community. When confirmation preparation is done intentionally and well on the local and diocesan level as baptismal affirmation, it has a positive impact on the spiritual lives of youth and the adults around them as part of a lifelong call to discipleship.
The Collaborative will be sharing resources, best practices, rites of passage liturgies, and models for baptismal affirmation in partnership with our Baptized for Life initiative. These will include the importance of intergenerational and community involvement in confirmation preparation, examples of good practice and strategies that are effective in helping young Christians grow as disciples of Jesus Christ, and how to recognize that confirmation in the Episcopal Church provides a critical moment pastorally and theologically for affirmation of baptism. To join the conversation with the Confirmation Collaborative please contact VTS alum, Sharon Ely Pearson email@example.com or me.
Lisa Kimball, Ph.D. Associate Dean Lifelong Learning