Taking a Confirmation name is a sign of starting a new life. In the Old Testament God gave new names to some of the people he called to serve him, eg. Abram became Abraham. Jesus also gave new names to some of the apostles whom he called to serve him, eg. Simon became Peter and Levi became Matthew.
Until recently people entering religious life (nuns and brothers) took a new name as a sign of starting a new life. It is also common for actors and singers to take a new name when starting out on a new stage career.
At Confirmation we choose a new name. This is a sign that we are ready to start a new life. We are ready to begin living in a new way. We are ready to serve God.
(The websites www.actapublications.com or www.catholic.org are helpful in finding saint’s names and useful facts about saints as is Religious Education net. )
The confirmation candidate is brought to the bishop by the Confirmation Sponsor. Just as there are usually sponsors to support those taking part in fasts or walks for charity, at Baptism and Confirmation there are sponsors who promise to help and support the child to grow as a follower of Jesus. The sponsor promises to help the child to be a true worker for the Kingdom.
The sponsors at Baptism are usually called the godparents. At Confirmation there is usually just one sponsor. Sometimes it is one of the godparents. At Confirmation the sponsor presents the child to the bishop. The sponsor stands behind the child and places his or her hand on the child's shoulder as a sign of support.
Reproduced with permission of Seomra Ranga