Children's Sacramental Preparation
(First Reconciliation, Confirmation, Holy Communion)
Children's Sacramental preparation is for those who are seven (7) years of age and older who:
- Are not baptized or were baptized outside the Catholic Church in another Christian denomination.
- Are in 2nd grade or older and have not prepared for First Reconciliation (also known as Penance or Confession). Children in the Diocese of Phoenix receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation no earlier than the 2nd grade.
- Are in 3rd grade or older and have not made Confirmation and/or First Holy Communion.
- After completing preparation for First Reconciliation, children in the Diocese of Phoenix receive both Confirmation and First Communion no earlier than the 3rd grade, at the same liturgy. This is known as the Restored Order. Click here to read The Restored Order of Sacraments of Initiation – Diocese of Phoenix.
Children younger than age seven should prepare for baptism as part of the infant baptism program. Please see the page – Preparing for the Sacrament of Baptism (Infant to age 6) on the parish website on how to get started.
To begin Sacramental Preparation:
- Become a registered parishioner of St. Mary Magdalene (if your family is not one already). We are discontinuing our “RE only” registration.
- Attend Sunday Mass at St. Mary Magdalene, using envelopes or Faith Direct, which was explained to you during the parish registration.
- If more information is needed, please email or call the Director of Youth Evangelization or the Assistant to the Director.
Preparation Components and Requirements:
- Sunday Mass attendance at a Catholic Church
- Catechetical formation through:
- Tuesday/Wednesday Night Family Catechesis. Children and parents are expected to attend the weekly session (Tuesday or Wednesday) they signed up for during registration. Multiple missed sessions may delay reception of sacraments.
- For those children preparing to receive Confirmation/First Holy Communion, children that are unbaptized and preparing to receive all three Sacraments of Initiation on the Easter Vigil, or children preparing for Full Reception in the Catholic Church, there will be a Saturday retreat held at the parish in April or May (TBA).
To help your children learn the essentials of each sacrament, please review the following Sacraments Essentials Sheets with them:
For children preparing for Confirmation, you must obtain a sponsor who meets the following requirements:
- Is at least 16 years old
- Is a baptized member of the Roman Catholic Church
- Has received the Sacraments of Holy Communion and Confirmation in the Catholic Church
- Regularly participates in Sunday Mass and Holy Days of Obligation
- Regularly receives the Sacraments of Holy Communion and Confession
- Believes what the Catholic Church professes and teaches and makes an effort to incorporate these teachings in daily life
- Is not the natural or adoptive parents of the child being sponsored
- Understands and accepts the responsibilities which are undertaken for sponsor
- Is in a marriage recognized as valid by the Catholic Church
- If single, is not cohabitating with someone (living together as if married)
What if my child has special needs?
Children with special needs may prepare for and receive Baptism, First Reconciliation, Confirmation and First Communion with their peers as long as they are able to participate in the rites with reverence. Using the student's IEP and other pertinent information provided by a parent, we will collaborate to develop a plan of sacramental preparation consistent with each child's abilities.
For more information, contact Director of Youth Evangelization.