Bishop Barron on Confirmation Names
How to Choose a Confirmation Name
If you are soon to be confirmed in the Holy Spirit, you know that this is a great step and a very significant happening in the Catholic Church. In Confirmation, you choose a Confirmation name, or the name of a saint, for yourself. Your patron saint will serve as your inspiration and guide in living a holy life. Choosing the right saint is a big step, so how does one choose a good Confirmation name?
Decide what traits are most applicable to who you are as a person.Specific virtues that your saint might exhibit include patience, perfection, humility, diligence, mortification, meekness, obedience, prayer, charity or simplicity. Consider which trait(s) correlate best with who you are.
Choose a similar saint if you are pious.Piety is learned most easily by talking about what it looks like. It is a virtue that contains elements of humility and religiosity.
- Saint Francis of Assisi was considered an incarnation of piety. His friendship with God was second nature. He listened to Scripture and to the Gospel, but was more of a man of action than he was of contemplation.
- Some saints, like Saint Hippolytus, Saint Helen, and Saint Olga, did not become saints until later in their lives. They did misdeeds but ultimately became saints through repentance and martyrdom.
Choose a saint that matches your outgoing personality.If you notice the needs of other people and speak up in support of them, pick a saint that matches that. Saints like Saint Angela Merici, Saint Teresa of Avila, and Saint Maria Goretti were saints known for being outgoing in their sainthood.
- Saint Maria Goretti was a virgin martyr, facing the decision of sin or death before the age of 12 and bravely saying that God would not want that kind of thing to happen.
- Saint Teresa of Avila was known as an active reformer. She spent time and energy reforming herself and the Carmelites, leading them back to the full observation of primitive Rule.
Choose a saint based on bravery or courage.Having courage is how a lot of saints acquired their sainthood. If you are the kind of person that stands up for the little guy, choose someone brave to guide your spiritual journey.
- Saint George is known for being the Saint of courage and bravery, particularly for his strength during battle.
- Saint Joan of Arc is another saint known for courage and bravery.
Choosing a Name Based on Your Hopes for the Future
Find your saint by looking at the feast day of the day you were born.You can learn a lot about where you’re headed by looking at where you’re from. Look back to the day you were born to see if you feel connected to your birthday saint.
- Every day of the year has the feast of at least one saint. Match your birthday to the feast day of that saint.
- A great online source for looking up saint names based on their feast days is:
Decide what or who you aspire to be as a person.Your saint should help you to live as holy a lifestyle as possible, so choose a saint who inspires you and whom you admire. In your faith, what do you aspire to do? Let your aspirations, your prayers, and your devotion guide you in choosing.
Making Your Selection in Choosing a Name
Narrow your list down to two saints.Find a spiritual connection to the stories of the two saints you’ve chosen. Saint Joan of Arc, for example, is remembered for her great bravery and love for God. Saint Agnes of Rome was only twelve when she was martyred for her devotion to God and her chastity. Saint Tarcisius was a martyr of twelve, killed because he would not give up the Holy Eucharist.
Discuss your selections with a family or friend practicing Catholicism.Don't be shy to talk about your options with your parents, your sponsor, or your pastor. Discuss what has attracted you to the saints you have chosen on a spiritual level.
- Talk to your family and friends again when you’ve made your selection between the two names. Practice saying your Confirmation name again and again.
- Practice writing your Confirmation name as part of your name too.
Pray to the saint whose name you’ve chosen.When you pray, ask that the saint intervene for you, that he or she helps you make great moral choices, and ask that they be a powerful guide for you spiritually for the rest of your life.
Adding a New Name
Obtain a Confirmation information form.When you’ve found a saint that inspires you and your faith, completing a form is the next step. After completing the Confirmation Name Report Form provided by your church, return it to your catechist.
Fill out the Confirmation information form.Every form is not the same, but most of them contain similar requests for information. You will be asked for your full name, your gender, address, contact information, occupation, and birth date.
Complete the form with information about your namesake.This is asked more often on forms meant to be completed by younger children. If so, help younger people with filling in information about the saints they’ve chosen.
- Be prepared to answer questions about who their saint is and why they want the saint to be their Confirmation name.
- Questions of their feast day, their birth, and their death will also be asked on Confirmation name forms.
- They might also need to give two examples of how the saint was a witness and disciple of Jesus Christ.
Answer questions regarding your faith.In addition to the other information outlined in this passage, the Confirmation form will require some details about your own faith. List your baptism date, the denomination you were baptized in, and when you intend to be confirmed.
- If you would like to make a public affirmation of faith by being baptized or confirmed in another Christian denomination, indicate that on your form by placing a check mark by that option.
- If you would just like to be kept informed about any future opportunities your church has for Confirmation, indicate that option with a check mark.
Inform your Confirmation preparation director or your pastor the saint that you chose.It is important that everyone is prepared before the bishop arrives on the big day. When you speak your Confirmation name and the bishop confirms you in that name, you will know that you made the choice of the Holy Spirit.
- Buy books, statues, and/or pictures affiliated with your namesake. Visual reminders throughout your home and day to day life will help you during times of reflection.
- Call on your patron saint for guidance and inspiration in leading a holy life as God has intended.
QuestionDo I have to use a saint's name for my Confirmation name?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou may also use the name of a Bible hero, but a saint is the typical choice as they may intervene and pray for you.Thanks!
QuestionDo I need to choose a male saint if I am a male?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerNo. You can choose a male saint if you are female or a female saint if you are male.Thanks!
QuestionWhat patron saint led a playful life?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerWell, St. Francis of Assisi enjoyed a life of partying with his friends, before experiencing the call to serve Christ. St. Maria Goretti was only a little girl, who loved to play with her friends, before she was murdered.Thanks!
QuestionCan a girl choose Michael or Gabriel as her Confirmation name?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYes, this is permitted. Likewise, boys may choose a feminine name. It's important to be aware that some cultures and leaders will value and respect this practice more than others. As always, the choice of a Confirmation name should be considered prudently and prayerfully.Thanks!
QuestionDo you need to choose another name if you have a middle name?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerA Confirmation name is different than the name your parents have given you. It's a saint's name. So if you're trying to adopt a Confirmation name on your spiritual journey, yes, you will need to choose another name.Thanks!
QuestionCan archangels be chosen for confirmation names?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerThanks!
QuestionCan I make up a saint name?Community AnswerNo, it has to be an actual saint who is venerated by the Catholic Church. To simply make up a "saint's name," would be like making up a historical person.Thanks!
QuestionDo I use the saint name as a part of a full name in the future?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerNo, choosing a confirmation saint is choosing a saint for guidance during your life.Thanks!
QuestionCan I have two Confirmation names?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou only may have one.Thanks!
QuestionIs Raven a Confirmation name?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerThanks!
- Some good female Saints for girls are: Mary, Elisabeth, Anna, Mary Magdalene, Veronica, Joanna, Cecilia, Agnes, Agatha, Claire, Catherine, Bernadette, Maria Goretti, Faustina, Theresa, and Lucy.
- If you want, you can have a parent or legal guardian take you to the appropriate federal bureau and have your Confirmation name made a part of your legal name. Otherwise, it is not a valid name or initial in the government, but in the church alone.
- Some good male Saints for boys are: Michael, Raphael, Gabriel, Joseph, John, Peter, Paul, James, Augustine, Ambrose, Justin, Francis, Anthony, Dominic, and Maximilian Kolbe.
Video: Choosing a Confirmation Name
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