Confirmation is one of the most widespread practices in the contemporary church, although much confusion exists about its relationship to faith: Is confirmation a rite of passage? Is it just one step on an unfolding journey of faith? Are new privileges granted and additional responsibilities required of confirmants? Christian educator Richard Robert Osmer addresses these questions as he examines the theological significance of confirmation.
Osmer surveys early church practices of confirmation and offers a comprehensive discussion of the particularities of the Protestant experience of confirmation, including Presbyterian, Episcopal, Lutheran, and Methodist practices. He discovers a need for a renewed understanding of confirmation in today’s church. He proposes a two-step process of confirmation that would address the unique concerns and understandings of those involved at two distinct and significant developmental transitions: from youth to adolescence and from adolescence to adulthood.