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Vicar’s write 25/26 July :  “Back to the basics” – the Anglican rite of Confirmation

posted 26.07.2015

On 13 Sep 2015, Bp John Tan will come and conduct Confirmation in St. James’. What is this service for and should I seek Confirmation if I am not a confirmed member?

The Church of England website explains “Confirmation marks the point in the Christian journey at which you affirm for yourself the faith into which you have been baptized and your intention to live a life of committed discipleship. This affirmation is confirmed through prayer and the laying on of hands by the confirming bishop. The Church also asks God to give you power through the Holy Spirit to enable you to live in the way of Jesus.”

In the early Church, baptism was immediately followed by the laying on of hands by the bishop. At a later stage, this laying on of hands for the anointing of the Holy Spirit was separated from baptism since there were infants being baptized. In the Diocese of Singapore, we too baptize infants and when they reach 14 years of age, we put them through a Confirmation course, have them affirm their baptismal vows and signal their intention to live as a committed disciple of Jesus Christ.

This is and should be the primary focus for Confirmation which is applicable to ALL the adults baptized on 12 July; receiving God’s grace and power to live this Christian life of committed discipleship which is otherwise impossible.

Are you baptized in a non-Anglican Church, worshipping here and have never transferred your membership? Are you baptized as an infant/child and have never been confirmed? Then I urge you to be confirmed this September or at the earliest possible Confirmation service. St. James’ is a place we call home and we want to understand the history, church structure (Faith & Order) and also the mission of the Diocese and St James’ Church. Only then, can we participate as a disciple in this local community to fulfil the mission God has given to us as a Diocese and parish.

Classes start 2 Aug; I invite those who want to refresh their understanding of the Anglican Church to sit in if you so desire. Looking forward to the joyous day when Bp John Tan lays hands on those to be confirmed. May God add to His church Holy Spirit filled disciples for His glory here in St. James’.

Ps Siang Guan