“Now, Lindsay,” you might say, “it’s barely Lent! Confirmation season isn’t for months!” Well, you’re right. It’s not Confirmation season, and except in emergencies, no one is going to be confirmed for at least six more weeks. That makes it the perfect time to consider not only what delightful Catholic reference book you’re going to give the latest confirmand in your life, but the perfect time to reflect on your on Confirmation. What have you done for your sealed-with-the-gift-of-the-Holy-Spirit faith lately? The Confirmed Catholic’s Companion: A Guide to Abundant Living just might do the trick.
Here at ACNM and in the rest of Internet Catholic land, we sometimes assume that everyone is on fire for the Faith and already knows quite a lot. However, there is always more to learn, and this book is a fantastic tool for learning, especially for newbies. It has the perfect balance between narration and reference, which is ideal for the busy reader, the teen reader, or the recently professed (that is, people who were baptized non-Catholic and have now made a profession of faith as Catholics). To be honest, I learned quite a few new things from this book! I don’t know if I ever actually knew what the Roman Curia is, and I definitely don’t have Acts of Faith, Hope, and Love memorized. (Since I’m sorry about that, it’s nice that I do know an Act of Contrition!)
The real joy of this book is the wealth of information in such a small package with such a welcoming tone. You can learn about
- the Holy Land
- Catholic meditation (including Centering Prayer and Lectio Divina)
- the sacraments
- the Cross
- the Bible
and more, all in one book. Some of the references are a little dated, and the Creed and Gloria appear in their pre-2011 translations, but that’s nothing a little editing won’t fix. I received this book when I was trained as a Catholic high school teacher, and I am still amazed at the usefulness and breadth of the information it contains. This book is the perfect resource for the committed Catholic: not to little, and not too much. It’s a third bowl of porridge kind of book.
The sacrament of Confirmation is not a graduation from Church. It’s the day you receive your marching orders to fight the daily battle against sin until God calls you from this life. When’s the last time you read the Commanding Officer’s battle plan?
Up next: Rebuilt: Awakening the Faithful, Reaching the Lost, and Making Church Matter, the story of re-energizing a Catholic parish
Author’s Note: Flight of the Earls was not received in time for this review. It has been postponed for review until a later date.