When you hear the word "confirmation," it's typically associated with the official verification of a thing such as an event, a purchase or even a reservation. Think: "Your confirmation number will be emailed to you shortly."
Then again, sometimes it references validation of a thought, action, supposition or assumption. Think: "See? They're holding hands; I knew they were dating!"
But last Sunday, "confirmation" was all about the Spirit the holy one.
It was a week ago that my nephew (who is like my second son) stood as sponsor for my birth son as he made his confirmation in the Catholic Church. What an incredibly proud and happy day for our family.
For those of you who may be unfamiliar, confirmation is one of the seven sacraments we Catholics willingly and happily commit to receiving throughout our lives - well, almost all of them, anyway. Matrimony and holy orders are the two which may or may not apply to a given individual but that's a column for another Sunday.
Confirmation is typically denoted by the process of "laying of hands" and receiving anointment with prayers and sacred chrism (blessed oils). It is the sacrament which completes the vows spoken on behalf of an infant at (or just after) birth. When Kyle was a few weeks old, my sister and brother-in-law stood as godparents for him and baptized him as we committed his life to Christ. Fourteen years and a few sacraments later (first reconciliation and holy Eucharist), their son Scott stood behind Kyle as he verbalized his intent to personally commit his life to Christ - in his own words. He confirmed it.
And what could possibly go wrong on such a day so glorious?
Except for that I hadn't gotten Kyle his card yet. Are you aware of the impressive palette of confirmation cards available in the Hallmark subsection of the gift island at the local Giant Eagle? The count stands as zero. Not a one. Zilch.
Yep, they've got greeting cards for everything from "I'm sorry you lost your smart phone!" to "Congratulations on your new pedicure!" but nothing for "God bless you on your confirmation."
Hmpf No. 1.
Then there was the whole cross debacle. Frustrated by offerings I'd perused at local jewelers, I searched online to find Kyle just the right cross necklace to commemorate this wonderful occasion. You know, something masculine yet understated. Eureka! I found it (or thought I had) at the Macy's headquarters and purchased it post haste
Which is more than I can say for the delivery method that ensued. When the Pony Express finally got it to our house the day after the confirmation, we discovered why it took so long to arrive it weighed 47 pounds.
Sheesh and hmpf No.2.
Yikes. For the first time in my life, something I ordered via the Internet was not only much larger in person than it appeared online, but it was also actually befitting of royalty as in, it looked like something the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air may have sported back in the day. Ugh.
When we finally returned the oversized jewelry to its rightful owner, Mr. T, we found a suitable cross necklace for Kyle to wear - and one which won't tether him to the bottom of the ocean should he choose to wear it on vacation someday.
Finally, there was the food conundrum. Do you understand how hard it is to simultaneously keep food warm without drying it out for two and a half hours - unattended?
Hmpf No. 3.
Not to mention that, with two pans of sausage and peppers, two crockpots of kielbasa and sauerkraut, a mountain of salad, a ton of seasoned broccoli, two pans of homemade mac-and-cheese, a loaf of homemade bread, roasted peppers, four dozen hard rolls, celery and carrot sticks, two pizzas, peppers in oil, cookies, a red velvet cake, candies and a to-die-for Oreo cheesecake made by my angel pal Christine (Ruggieri, a Warrenite) - I was worried that we might run out of food!
Look, I'm Italian; don't try to understand.
But you know what? When all was said and done, it was a perfect day. The best part of which was watching my son and nephew bond in their shared faith.
If ever I doubted how important it is to instill the things that matter in the next generation, I certainly got my confirmation last week.
Kimerer is a Tribune Chronicle columnist and proud mama and aunt. Contact her with confirmation of good in the world at firstname.lastname@example.org.