Diocesan Confirmation Liturgy
Pentecost Sunday, May 20th, 2018, 3:00pm
Cathedral Basilica of Saint Joseph


Questions? Contact Christopher Wemp at cwemp@dsj.org or 408-983-0136

  • The liturgy will begin at 3:00p. Candidates and sponsors must arrive no later than 2:30p to check-in and be ready for a brief rehearsal.
  • The Diocesan Confirmation will be a Liturgy of the Word with the Rite of Confirmation. There will be no Liturgy of the Eucharist.
  • At least one member of your confirmation team should be present to assist your candidates.
  • Please review with your candidates and sponsors the responses for the Rite of Confirmation.
  • Pastors and parish priests are encouraged to attend and concelebrate. Please inform Hưng Phạm if you wish to concelebrate.
  • There will be a brief rehearsal with all the candidates and sponsors about 15 minutes before the liturgy.

How many sponsors can a candidate have?

  • Each candidate must be accompanied by at least one sponsor; they may bring two sponsors, one male and one female.

Can a candidate have a “proxy” sponsor, someone who stands in for the sponsor who is unable to be present at the liturgy?

  • Ideally, the sponsor is present at the liturgy as a public sign of their commitment to their important role as sponsor and as a visible support for their candidate. However, if they are unable to be present at the liturgy for a serious reason, another person may stand in for the candidate’s sponsor.

  • A sponsor is chosen by the one to be confirmed, by the parents or guardian, or, in their absence, by the pastor or minister;
  • A sponsor intends to fulfill their role as sponsor to the best of their ability;
  • A sponsor actively lives their Christian faith by knowing Jesus in the Word and the teachings of the Church; in participating in their own parish community; in celebrating Mass regularly on Sundays and practicing a life of prayer; and in being a public witness to their Christian faith through their actions and words in their homes, workplaces, and community;
  • A sponsor is at least 16 years of age or older, or the pastor or minister has granted an exception for a just cause;
  • A sponsor must be a Catholic who has been baptized, confirmed, and has already received Eucharist;
  • A sponsor is not perfect and does not need to know everything about being Catholic, but they genuinely strive to be a role model of the Catholic faith for the one they sponsor;
  • If they are married, a sponsor has been validly married according to the laws of the Catholic Church and they are not bound by any other canonical penalties;
  • A sponsor is not the father or mother of the one to be confirmed;
  • A sponsor makes a lifelong promise to help the confirmed person live as a true witness of Christ;
  • Ideally, the confirmation sponsor was also the person’s baptism sponsor (godparent)

These requirements for confirmation sponsors come from the Code of Canon Law (#874, #892, and #893).

Saints are excellent role models of Christian faith, and candidates should be encouraged to learn more about the saints and imitate them in their virtues. However, confirmation candidates (as well as persons to be baptized in the United States) are NOT REQUIRED to choose a Confirmation name.

The Church strongly recommends that confirmation candidates are confirmed with the name by which they were baptized, to show the integral connection between baptism and confirmation. If a candidate, by their own choice, desires to be confirmed with a saint’s name other than their own, they may do so. To honor the candidates’ own identity, they may be confirmed using both their given name at baptism and their chosen confirmation name.

Read more about confirmation names:

An important part of the Rite of Confirmation is the Bishop calling each candidate by name as he anoints them. The Bishop needs to be able to read the candidate’s name clearly on the name tag that the candidate wears. So that you can help the Bishop fulfill his role well, please be sure to do the following:

  • Parish confirmation coordinators MUST supply each candidate with a name tag on which is written the name they want the Bishop to use when the candidate is confirmed
  • Do not include the candidate’s last name or parish or other information or graphics on the name tag
  • The candidate’s name should be written or typed clearly in a large font that is at least 24-point in size; the font should not be a calligraphy or script font; a simple plain font printed in black is best
  • On the day of the liturgy, parish Confirmation coordinators MUST bring to the Cathedral the name tags of all their candidates and distribute their name tags to the candidates prior to check-in at the Cathedral
  • Ask candidates with long hair to be sure their hair is not covering the name tag as they approach the Bishop

Several rows of each section of the Cathedral will be reserved for candidates, their sponsors, and two members of each parish’s Confirmation team. Families, friends, and parishioners are welcomed and can sit in the unreserved sections.

  • Dress is Sunday best. Candidates and sponsors should wear something they would wear if they were visiting the Pope or the President of the United States.
  • There are stairs that candidates and sponsors will need to navigate if they are able to do so. Therefore comfortable and appropriate shoes are best.

Please let your candidates and sponsors know that there is no parking lot at the Cathedral. All participants will need to park in a public parking lot or along the nearby streets. You can find more current information on parking at the Cathedral here.

The chancery does not give Confirmation certificates. If your candidates want a record of their Confirmation, you are welcomed to provide them with your own parish certificate.

Each parish that celebrates Confirmation at the Cathedral at this Pentecost liturgy is responsible for the following, to be completed at least two weeks after the liturgy:

  1. Compiling a list of:
      – the names of the confirmed,
      – the names of each candidate’s parents,
      – the names of each candidate’s sponsors
      – and, the name of the confirmed’s parish.
  2. Sending a copy of the above list by email, fax (408-983-0121), or postal mail – The Chancery, 1150 N. First Street, Suite 100, San Jose, CA 95112-4966, attn: Hung Pham, no later than two weeks after the Confirmation. A copy of this list will be kept at the Office for Parish Services and at the Cathedral.
  3. Record the above information into your parish register, and, if desired, issue a Certificate of Confirmation to the newly confirmed under the name of the parish.
  4. Forward this information to the parish of Baptism of each of the newly confirmed.