We are excited to offer Confirmation Classes to you this fall. Confirmation is a sacramental moment in which the candidate (confirmand) stands before God and the church to affirm their faith in and commitment to Christ, and to receive strength in their walk with God. Promises made at baptism are renewed. It is an opportunity for the church to come together to support individual members who are growing in their faith. Confirmation will be on Sunday, February 11.
Confirmands will meet twelve times from 11:30 – 1:00 (with breaks for Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays) starting October 8th and completing in mid-January with a retreat. The gatherings will include a time of both instruction and discussion, followed by lunch. The retreat (details to follow) will be a culmination of the Confirmation process and is required to become confirmed. You may miss two classes and still be eligible to be confirmed.
Sacraments – Our first gathering will be an encouraging hands-on journey to understand how God graces us in meaningful ways. God uses sacraments to touch our lives in beautiful ways, especially during important times such as expressing our faith in Christ (baptism) and gathering together regularly to celebrate the love of Christ in sharing his body and blood (Eucharist). This time will set the stage for your entire Confirmation journey.
Cross & Salvation – Salvation is what we receive from God. The cross is the central aspect to salvation. We’ll review God’s plan of salvation as taught in the Scriptures focused on Jesus Christ’s work of redemption that makes it possible for us to become children of God.
Our Journey – Everyone has a story. You have a faith story. We want to help you explore it and express it.
Bible: Old Testament – The Old Testament is God’s Word written in Hebrew and Aramaic, detailing creation, the people of Israel, and foreshadowing God’s plan for all peoples, up until the time of Christ. We’ll review the Old Testament and highlight major themes that set the foundation for the New Testament. You’ll come away with a new appreciation for ancient truth that impacts your life today.
Bible: New Testament – The New Testament is God’s Word written in Greek emphasizing Christ’s birth, his life, passion, and resurrection, and the influence he has had on the world. You’ll understand the development of the Church around the ancient world and be introduced to pictures of eternity. No other literature has impacted the world as much as the Bible.
Church History – With nearly 2000 years of incredible history of the people of God, we’ll give you one fact from each year to memorize. That’s 2000 facts you will need to memorize! Just kidding – but it will be a fun survey full of key movements that have influenced the Christian church today.
Grace Church History – Grace Episcopal Church of Ocala has a rich 170-year history of worship and service in Marion County. You will be confirmed, reaffirmed, or received into a body with an amazing history, because we have an amazing God. During our Confirmation gatherings, you’ll discover how you can impact our history moving forward.
The Creed's – Episcopalians use two primary creeds in our worship: the Apostles Creed and the Nicene Creed. These creeds inform our faith and connect us to the worldwide church. We will cover the history and content of one of the most used liturgies in the history of the world.
Book of Common Prayer (BCP) – The BCP and the Bible are the most important books of the Episcopal faith. This gathering you will receive a basic overview of the BCP and learn how to use it. A key goal will be for you to gain an appreciation for the practical use of this ancient material that has blessed Anglican and other Christians for nearly 500 years.
Community – One of the key emphases of Confirmation is community: an experience of gathering together purposefully in Christ. You will be doing community the first 9 gatherings with your fellow confirmands. This week we’ll break it down a bit and help you to understand what you’ve been experiencing.
Hard Questions – Bring your questions about the Christian faith, the church, and how God works in your life and wants to use you in his kingdom. Over the course of our times together, we’ll capture your questions that arise and address them in this session. No question is un-ask-able!
Retreat – We will cap off our wonderful gatherings with a day or overnight retreat (details to follow). This will be an opportunity to bring together much of the knowledge you will have gained over the previous 11 gatherings and celebrate the community you will have experienced. Attendance at this retreat will be required in order to complete the Confirmation process.