First Congregational’s ministries encourage children and youth to explore their developing faith through learning, worship, service and fellowship—all in a warm and accepting environment. For information about programs, see our pages and comprehensive CYF Calendar.
Grade 9 and older
Contact: Rev. Nick Hatch
Teens have to make tough choices about how to live in the midst of competing messages and peer pressures. They yearn not to just get by, but also to live lives that are good for themselves, others and all of creation. During our year-long confirmation ministry, students investigate God, the church and their faith through fellowship, experiences, mentoring, and testimony.
Scroll down for more information and registration forms.
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Wednesday evening sessions focus on basic practices of the Christian faith. We use Way to Live: Christian Practices for Teens, by Dorothy Bass and Don C. Richter, as a guide for learning about topics such as:
- Life—Getting in touch with our longing to live fully, through the kind of freedom, love and courage with which Jesus lived and now offers us today.
- Stuff—Dealing with stuff in ways that deepen our relationships with God, other people and the whole created world.
- Play—A part of God’s good creation and important to a balanced, happy life.
- Forgiveness—Receiving and sharing God’s forgiveness helps us to mend what was torn and frees us to build a future with one another.
We use experiential learning to explore different Christian practices and world religions. Throughout the year we experience worship at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Appleton and Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, visit the Hindu Temple of Greater Chicago, and discuss grief and resurrection at Wichmann Funeral Home in Appleton.
Each Confirmand is paired with an adult mentor who shares the Confirmand’s faith journey. Our Confirmands are supported by a full community of adults with whom they can share an abundant life in Christ and practice the life of the Christian faith. Read more on being a mentor.
Toward the end of the confirmation experience, each youth crafts a faith statement, giving creative expression to a faith that is at once radically personal and universally shared among the community of Christian believers.
Attend all weekly gatherings.
Gatherings will (generally) be held each Wednesday of the month from 6:30–7:30 PM. Two excused absences are permitted as long as make-up assignments are completed.
Complete all take-home discussions.
Regular assignments should take no more than one hour to complete and are meant to be completed with a parent/guardian. All assignments will be provided during Wednesday discussions.
Meet with your mentor.
Each Confirmand will select/be assigned a mentor to accompany them through their confirmation experience. Meetings with mentors will take place during regularly scheduled gatherings 2–3 times a month.
Complete Meditation Feedback forms.
These are to be found and turned in at the front desk in the church office. If you are out of town and worship elsewhere, just bring back the worship bulletin signed by the minister, and that will count as the same.
Complete all the required faith experiences.
These trips are integral parts of the confirmation process (winter retreat, MLK service, funeral home visit, Catholic worship). If one of these experiences is missed, you are encouraged to make it up the following year, even after you have been confirmed.
Serve the church.
Each Confirmand will serve the church at least two times in some way during the year. Some examples: an usher, a greeter, a server for coffee fellowship, a liturgist, a soloist, a video camera operator, a Church School teaching assistant, etc.
Serve the community.
Each Confirmand will take part in at least one community service project: Service Sunday, Homeless Connections or the Youth Mission Trip in the summer.
Complete your Statement of Faith.
These will be finished in grade 10 fall gatherings, then presented to a pastor in September and posted for the congregation to read on Confirmation Sunday.
You can find the required confirmation forms below.