Writing a letter to your confirmation candidate

It seems that one of the biggest events in confirmation preparation in this country is the letters of support to be given to the confirmation candidates during their mandatory retreats.

I have three such letters saved on this blog:

Confirmation letter to my daughterConfirmation letter to my fourth sonConfirmation letter to to my third son
I've asked my children what they remember about the letter they got from me and their dad, and also what they remembered about the letters they received. 
The answer was not much, or at least nothing specific. In general they were happy to have gotten a bag full of letters and there was a sense of feeling loved and supported. I guess that's the main thing - for them to have a sense that this is an important step in their spiritual growth, and that people they know, love and respect have taken the time out of their lives to let them know that! So here are some tips on procuring and writing letters for young confirmation candidates. Start thinkin…

A Mother's Examination of Conscience

If you were working on the indulgence for this month, you will need to get to confession.  So to get you started on making a good confession  here is a brief examination of conscience for wives and mothers. 

Prayerful Psalm
Leonard J. Matthews, via Flickr, licensed cc. 


Do I thank God upon waking in the morning?

Do I make time for prayer time in the morning before anything else? 

Do I try to read a little scripture every day?

Do I check in with God throughout my day? 

Do I try to avoid what I know are my near occasions of sin?

Am I faithful to the duties of my household? and/or my job?

Do I try to refrain from saying anything unkind in real life or on the internet? 

Am I being a good steward of my body? Do I take time for exercise? Do I make sure I am eating healthy foods and not engaging in gluttony?

Am I modest in my dress?

Do I try to put the needs of others first?

Do I complain too much? 

Daniel Zanni, via Flickr, licensed cc. 


Do my children say their morning and night prayers?

Have I cared for the spiritual needs of my children? 

Have I tried to foster a Christian family where Jesus is Lord? Could a visitor to my home know that they have entered a Catholic home?

Have I taught my children the Gospel and the commandments of God? 

Have I prayed with them? 

Have I been persistent and courageous in my training and teaching? 

Have I been lazy and apathetic? 

Have I disciplined them when necessary? 

Have I been affectionate toward them?

 Have I hugged them and told them that I love them? 

Have I been impatient and frustrated with them? Have I mocked my children in front of others?

Have I corrected them out of love in order to teach them what is right and good? 

Have I treated them with respect? 

Have I spoken to them in a sarcastic or demeaning way? 

Have I held resentments against them or have I forgiven them? 

Have I been of one heart and mind with my spouse in the upbringing of the children?

 Or have I allowed disagreements and dissension to disrupt the training, educating and disciplining of our children? 

Have I been a good Christian witness to my children in what I say and do? 

Or do I demand one standard for them and another for myself? 

Are my children trained to be polite at all times?

Do I teach my children to be good losers and gracious winners in sports and play?

Do I fail to recognize faults in my children?

Are my children learning to be calm when things go wrong because I myself am a patient mother?

Are my children learning to be charitable and tolerant of the faults of others because I am charitable and tolerant?

Have I fulfilled my obligations of instructing my children regarding holy purity? Do I monitor their time on the computer, t.v. and movies. 

Do I pray for my children? 

Do I make sure my children get to mass? and confession? 

Have I made sure my children have received the sacraments?

Praying Izzy


Is Christ the center of my life and of all that is done in my home?

Is there a picture of Christ or His Mother in my home. 

Do the members of my family pray grace before and after meals?

Do my children know the Angelus because we recite it before grace in our home at noon and in the evening? Do they know the other common Catholic prayers that are part of their Catholic heritage? 

Would Christ approve of the magazines and comic books I allow into my home? Would he approve of the movies we stream and the sites we visit on the internet? 

Is my phone used to receive and spread noble thoughts? Do I spend too much time on my phone instead of being in the presence of my family?

cross, blog 001

My Spouse
Have I cared for my spouse? 

Have I been generous with my time? 

Have I been affectionate and loving? 

Have I told my spouse that I love him? 

Have I been concerned about the spiritual wellbeing of my spouse? 

Have I listened to my spouse? 

Do I give my spouse the opportunity to help and care for me? 

Have I paid attention to his or her concerns, worries, and problems? 

Have I allowed resentments and bitterness toward my spouse to take root in my mind? 

Have I forgiven my spouse for the wrongs he has committed against me? 

Have I lied, been deceitful or manipulated my spouse in order to get my own way? 

Have I spoken sharply or sarcastically to my spouse?

Have I injured my spouse through taunting and negative teasing? 

Have I gossiped about my spouse? 

Have I been moody and sullen? 

Have I bickered with my spouse out of stubbornness and selfishness? 

Have I been loving and physically affectionate in my sexual relations? 

Have I refused sexual relations out of laziness, revenge or manipulation?

 Have I flirted or fostered improper relationships with someone else, either in my mind or through words and actions? 

Have I committed adultery? 

Have I used pornography: books, magazines or movies or masturbated? 

Have I misused alcohol or drugs? 

Have I been financially responsible? 

Mario Di Carli, via Flickr, licensed cc. 

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Based on Examination of Conscience for Married People and
from Mother Love a Manual for Christian Mothers with Instructions for the Archconfraternity of Christian Mothers by Rev. Pius Franciscus, O.F.M. CAP