Confirmation & Youth Ministry Program
The following is an explanation of the High School Confirmation & Youth Ministry structure at St. Thomas, which went into effect in the Fall of 2010 for incoming Freshmen, and has since been slightly revised and enhanced to add additional offerings.
Confirmation preparation is a two-year process. Following accordingly, teens must complete all necessary components of the program for two years to be eligible to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation. Thus, the earliest a teen would be eligible for receiving the Sacrament of Confirmation would be in the spring of their sophomore year.
Still, this is not a one-size-fits-all program. As always, we are open to working with everyone on a case by case basis to address the time-frame and format of these requirements that make the most sense for each teen and family.
If a teen follows the usual progression of starting the program freshmen year and getting confirmed in the spring of his/her sophomore year, here are the necessary components for each year:
- Freshmen Program (Year 1):
- Attends all scheduled Journey Nights (What is a Journey Night?) for the school-year. Typically the program consists of five events to amount to a commitment about every other month.
- Completion of 20 hours of volunteer service documented on the Service Experience Reflection Sheet.
- Participation in the one-day Freshmen Retreat offered in the Fall. Click here for dates and details.
- Participation in a Freshmen Small Group. Click here for more info.
- Sophomore Program (Year 2):
- Attends all scheduled Journey Nights (What is a Journey Night?) for the second year.
- Completion of 20 hours of volunteer service documented on the Service Experience Reflection Sheet for a 2nd year (to amount to at least 40 hours between the two years of preparation)
- Participation in one of our offered weekend LIFE Retreats (Fri. night through Sun. afternoon). These are typically offered three times throughout the school-year. Click here for dates & details.
- Enrollment and completion in one of the 8-week focused Confirmation prep classes (offered at two dates & times in the Fall and at two dates & times in the Spring).
- Attend any necessary meetings or rehearsals for parents, teens, and sponsors.
Please Note: This is the “base” of involvement for Freshmen and Sophomores focused on preparation for the sacrament of Confirmation. Please bear in mind teens are also encouraged to get involved in additional optional general youth ministry opportunities and also are allowed to postpone participation in various offerings if they are undecided about Confirmation or wish to be Confirmed after their Sophomore year.
Options for Involvement Outside of Confirmation Program
Retreat Team – Any teen, sophomore and above, who has attended a LIFE Retreat (the 3-day retreat required for 2nd year of Confirmation prep) is eligible to join our Retreat Team that plans and organizes the upcoming retreats. Generally LIFE Team meets weekly on Thursdays from 6:30 – 8:30 pm.
NCYC (National Catholic Youth Conference) – We will be taking a group of young people and adults to NCYC in the fall of 2017 (November 16-19, 2017). This is an amazing experience connecting teens from our parish with over 25,000 Catholic teens from around the country. NCYC will be held in Indianapolis, IN at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Mission Trips – Each summer we try to offer a local (non-overnight), national (7-day overnight) and international (7-10 days overnight) mission experiences. This is a great opportunity for teens passionate about service and justice and living out the call in Matthew 25 to really dive deeper into what it means to truly be a servant. Information is usually provided in the winter prior to the trip dates.
For more information about these, or any other program offerings, please contact:
Director of Youth & Young Adult Ministry
630-355-8980 x 117 (Office)