The Way Program
What is The Way:
Our high school ministry program is entitled 'The Way' because Christ tells us in the Gospel of John, 14:6, “I am the way, the truth, the life. No one shall come to my father except through me." The Way meets on Sunday evenings from 7:15pm - 8:30pm. Youth Mass is held on these Sundays at 6:00 pm in the church. The program begins in the church immediately following Mass. From there, the teens get together with their small groups and rotate to different room rotations to learn and discuss different topics each week.
Confirmation General Information
At St. Mary Magdalene, we do not separate “Youth Group” (The Way) and “Confirmation Class.” All high school teens attend “The Way” and receive their required Sacramental formation for Confirmation through their participation in our program for two consecutive years. At STMM, teens are able to receive Confirmation in Spring of 10th grade at the earliest. Our program is a big commitment that we take very seriously. A teen should enroll and participate in Confirmation when they feel they are ready and they should be making this choice of their own free will.
Participation Requirements for Confirmation
- The Way: Regularly attend The Way for 2 consecutive years (no more than 5 absences each year out of the 21 sessions offered). An alternate option for Catholic high school students is offered and referenced below.
- Retreat: Attend one high school retreat with St. Mary Magdalene. StMM offers 2 retreats each year for high school teens to meet this requirement. One retreat is in August and one is in February of each school year. If a participant is unable to make one of these retreats, it is their responsibility to attend a Confirmation retreat at another parish within the Diocese of Raleigh. StMM will need an email or note from the parish where they attended the retreat.
- Parent Workshop: Parents attend one required Confirmation Parent Workshop before or during Year 1 or Year 2 of their teen’s Confirmation preparation. If parents attended the Confirmation workshop the previous year for another child, they do not have to attend back-to-back years.
- Sponsor: Teen selects a sponsor who is a baptized Catholic, of at least 16 years of age, who received First Communion and Confirmation. Parents may not be sponsors.
- Registered Parishioner: Family is expected to be registered and contributing parishioners at St. Mary Magdalene before enrolling in Confirmation. For information on becoming a registered parishioner, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Service: Teens are asked to find a cause or project out in our community and spend some time volunteering in service. There is no minimum hour required. Volunteering within our church ministries does not fulfill this requirement. Each semester, we organize a group service afternoon with “Miracle League”. We also often direct teens to serve locally with Brown Bag Ministries. Other options are to volunteer with the Food Bank, Habitat for Humanity, etc.
- Paperwork: At the beginning of Year 2 of a teen’s Confirmation preparation, they will receive an email asking them to set up an account where they will upload their baptismal certificate & complete the online forms. This paperwork is an integral part of Confirmation preparation and must be completed on a timely basis. Paperwork/online documents are handled by Vicki Kristoff who can be reached at email@example.com.
Alternate option for a teen who attends Catholic high school
We strongly encourage all teens to attend our full program in order to obtain the greatest fruit and sense of community in our parish. However, if a teen attends Catholic high school (Cardinal Gibbons or St. Thomas More Academy), they have the option for an abbreviated track of The Way. During Year 1 and Year 2, the candidate attends 12 specific nights of The Way and are placed in small groups with each other. They can miss no more than 3 nights each year. This option will be indicated on the registration form, and the program nights are highlighted and listed in our program calendar.
What happens if they don’t meet the requirements?
If a teen misses more than the minimum required number of sessions, they will be placed in a 'deferred' status and are required to attend The Way for an additional year. They will then be on track to receive the sacrament the following year.
Adult Confirmation at St. Mary Magdalene is for Catholics over the age of 18 who did not receive the Sacrament of Confirmation at an earlier age.
Requirements for an adult seeking to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation include:
- Have had a Catholic baptism
- Have received First Reconciliation
- Have received First Eucharist
- Have submitted a copy of baptismal certificate with sacrament dates noted to the Parish Office
- Have attended the catechetical sessions required for adult Confirmation