Apparently the latest thing is to have parents, relatives, and friends of the family write support letters to kids getting Confirmed, so they can read them on their Confirmation retreat. And of course the parents have to hand them in, and then the people running the retreat pass them out.
1. Of course you know some of these kids don’t have any Catholic relatives, or only a few, or relatives who don’t know how to write, or even those who just won’t have time for it or won’t have read the take-home materials. So you know perfectly well that it’s going to turn into another version of Valentine’s Day in a classroom where kids are allowed to send Valentines only to the kids they like — an exhibition of how they are alone in the world, or how other people are more popular. Yay! What a great preparation to receive the Holy Spirit! Feel like crap!
2. Of course you know some of the letters will be full of anti-theological, heretical nonsense. Even if it’s lovingly meant, that’s not helpful.
3. They still call them “candidates.” I didn’t realize when I was a kid that this is deeply insulting. A “candidate” is another word for “catechumen.” It’s a word for the unbaptized, not for Christian kids.
4. They are still making kids buy Confirmation with huge numbers of service hours and hoops. Simony is a mortal sin.