Catholic Confirmation in the 70s–your memories please
by julie swanson
For any of you who grew up in the 70s like I did, do you remember what your confirmation preparation was like? I remember the actual day I was confirmed (6th grade, I believe), what I wore and everything–corduroy jumper over a turtleneck and thick knee socks, all in wintery colors and from that I deduce that it must’ve been late fall or winter or very early spring. But if it was winter, that wouldn’t have given us much time to prepare for it in catechism classes (we spent almost a full year preparing for 1st Communion), unless we started preparing the year before.
Now kids are confirmed much later. It seems that over the years the age has gotten older and older in increments. Most parishes confirm kids as juniors in high school now. Here, and other places I’ve heard of, it’s a two-year commitment/preparation with retreats and all, a very involved process.
I don’t remember such rigorous instruction. I do recall being worried that the bishop would ask us questions–seems we’d been drilled to prepare for it so that we might know the answers to what he’d ask–and then being relieved when he didn’t quiz us. So there was at least that instruction we must’ve been given.
Anyone who might read this and be willing to share their memories, it would be much appreciated.
I ask because I have a story that begins with a main character who’s making her 1st Communion and it’s been suggested the story would be more marketable with an older main character and that I should bump her age up to 10 or 11 at the very least, but the religious elements are important to the story–the chapters with the nun catechism teacher and what beliefs the main character came away from those catechism classes with– and I’ve been having a hard time figuring out how to keep them without the 1st communion. But it’s just occurred to me that perhaps I could substitute confirmation preparation for the 1st Communion.