Confirmation is one of the seven holy sacraments in the Roman Catholic Church. Usually occurring during adolescence, it is considered to be a mature acceptance of faith and an important step into adulthood. More formally, it is the voluntary sealing of the holy covenant made at baptism. Although not mentioned in official liturgical sources, it is common for the confirmed to take on a confirmation name, that of a patron saint he holds in particular esteem. It is customary to give gifts to the newly confirmed, even if you aren't in attendance at the ceremony.
Money is the most popular and customary confirmation gift. Place cash or a check in a handwritten card with a sincere message of congratulations. The amount will vary depending upon how well you know the boy being confirmed, but anywhere from $25 -$50 is considered appropriate.
Bonds or Gift Cards
If you do not feel comfortable handing out cash, then bonds for college savings or gift cards are also an appropriate gift. Select a gift card based on the boy's personal interests. Again, $25 - $50 is the customary amount.
Medals and other insignia of the confirmed boy's patron saint make for a more personal gift. Medals can fit on a chain to be worn as jewelry or can be kept purely as a keepsake. Other insignia include framed icons, keepsake boxes and small statuettes, although they're less traditional.
A Bible is another classic confirmation gift. You can expect that the confirmed boy will probably receive many Bibles from friends and family members, so be creative in your selection. Alban Butler's Lives of the Saint or a catechism are good choices. Many Catholic bookstores have books aimed directly at adolescents.
- "Catholic etiquette: what you need to know about Catholic rites and wrongs"; Kay Lynn Isca; 1997.
- "Confirmation: A Parish Celebration"; Timothy Fitzgerald, 1999.