Sunday, March 29, 2009

Confirmation Sunday

This morning at Christ Clarion Presbyterian Church, three young people "confirmed" the baptismal vows their parents made when they were infants. They stated their faith and became adult members of our church. Our interim pastor, Lynn, and I had mentored them (and a fourth young lady who decided to wait) through eight weeks of classes. Actually, I enjoyed it so much that I'm somewhat sorry the experience is over.

I think we helped these really thoughtful kids further understand what Christianity and and its formal aspect (organized religion) are about. We also taught them to respect the faith stories of others who are not Christians, and to remember that all creation is God's.

Our church is fairly liberal - not too dogmatic. Presbyterians believe each person is an individual who meets God out of their own experience. We also believe that God is the beginning and the end of all things, a being to be honored, trusted, and served to the best of our ability. These young people have now started their own quests to make that vision a reality.

As is typical for teachers, I got at least as much out of the confirmation class as did the students. I believe God is mysterious on purpose, so that we might have free will. Said another way, God is "hiding in plain sight" - we each choose to see God, or not. The class forced me to review my own religious history and understand what I believe at this time in my life. To be honest, my faith has become simpler and simpler as I have learned more about religion and experienced more of life. The world is a complicated place, and life is filled with conundrums which make it difficult to perceive and do what is truly "right". Outcomes are less important than the act of trying, I'm hoping.

Faith is a choice. There are no certainties. Am I more content because I trust God to make everything right in the end? Yep! There's my own confirmation.

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