July 12 2020 was a special day for the South Grey Bruce Lutheran parish of Mildmay, Normanby and Neustadt as the congregation witnessed 6 young people affirm their baptism promise. After studying for two years, these young people and their families were not going to let something like a pandemic stop this celebration! Oh, and did I mention that I arrived as their pastor just weeks before Covid isolation began? The final confirmation class was an email assignment.
Following heath guidelines, one family bubble at a time (up to 9 people) gathered in the church each week over 5 weeks to participate in the worship recording for that Sunday, and to celebrate with the young person as faith was professed. The parents or sponsors were invited to ‘lay on hands’ as the pastor spoke the blessing and prayer to “stir up the gift of the Holy Spirit”. It was a powerful moment.
The congregation was represented by a ‘word cloud’ – an idea suggested by Sandra Powell, a friend from Resurrection Halifax. Members of the congregation sent words of welcome, faith and congratulations for each confirmand, so no two clouds were the same. These were put on a card along with a personal verse of scripture, and presented to each person. The family celebrated Holy Communion together and then photographs were taken
Each confirmation was recorded and it is a sign of the connectedness of this community that the families wanted to have all of the individual affirmation events broadcast to the congregation on the same date. Thus followed several hours of learning how to edit and combine videos and the result was shared on July 12 as part of the South Grey Bruce worship broadcast. (www.sweetlutheran.com)A confirmation collage was created from individual photographs for the archives.
We are excited and blessed to have these young people continue to grow in faith as part of this parish.
Rev Pam McNeil