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Bradford diocesan motion on confirmation

29 June 2011


From Mr Malcolm Halliday

Sir, — I write in response to your negative editorial (Comment, 26 June) concerning the forthcoming session of the General Synod, in which you suggest, among other things, that the motion from Bradford diocesan synod seeking to permit baptised adults to holy communion before confirmation is mere “kite-flying”.

As the proposer of the motion at York, I would wish to assure your readers that members of Bradford diocese are very serious about this, as the supporting material suggests. We would have hoped that your publication would see it as a positive mission effort, trying to make our Church more accepting of an important group, i.e. baptised but unconfirmed people. If it is flying a kite, then we feel the Holy Spirit is providing the wind in its sails.

8 Malham Court, Silsden
Keighley BD20 0QB

From the Revd Richard Buckley

Sir, — No doubt there are many scriptural and theological reasons why the Bradford motion at General Synod to permit adults to receive communion if not “ready and desirous” to be confirmed should fall. I feel strongly, however, that adult confirmation is a spiritual milestone in life.

A person will not know that it may be, until he or she has explored the possibility. To provide an opt-out could mean that he or she never will — and, with the Church, will miss a great deal.

Candidates visibly grow during the preparation period and become, over time, stronger members of Christ’s body, the Church. One recent confirmand has, for ex­ample, become our verger; another has offered for the Reader ministry.

The service itself is a kind of mountain-top moment that can offer strength for the way ahead, and we all need such experiences to draw on.

May I quote from a letter my wife and I received after our recent confirmation? “I really enjoyed the classes, sharing my journey with you both and, while still journeying, know that on Sunday one destina­tion was reached. I have thanked our Lord. . .”

I hope this speaks for itself.

The Vicarage, Church Drive
Wentworth, Rotherham S62 7TW

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