Until recently, it was the practice of the congregation I serve for the members of the confirmation class, most of them ninth graders, to write individual statements of faith. In those statements the youth were asked to say what they believe about God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. In reading newsletters from other congregations, I have noticed that this is a common practice.
In our congregation the statements were written with great ceremony at a retreat that was held the month of confirmation Sunday. During the service of confirmation a number of those who were about to be confirmed read their statements to the congregation. Typically, some statements were somewhat stumbling attempts to capture these enduring mysteries, while others could only be called statements of doubt. The congregation would receive each with the lavish appreciation and praise of a parent who has just been presented with a child’s first drawing.