Confirmation is not just another Sacrament. It has an intimate connection with the Sacrament of Baptism. It also has to follow Baptism and be received afterwards. The reason is that Confirmation builds on Baptism and completes it by strengthening the one who has been baptised with additional graces that make for spiritual maturity. We can see the effect of Confirmation in the transformation of the Apostles at Pentecost. From being timid and even fearful followers of Christ they went out to confront a large gathering of people to proclaim fearlessly the Good News of the Gospel. Personal apprehensions were no more and never would be. They were ready for whatever came their way as they faced the crowd, and whether it was hostile or not, was now no longer a concern.
The Church depends on the message of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus being told throughout the centuries by its members who have been baptised and who, through the graces of Confirmation, have the courage to do so. That is why Confirmation is not an option but a requirement and to be received without undue delay.
The bishop is the ordinary minister to confer Confirmation. He can delegate priests to take his place when circumstances warrant it.
To appreciate better the graces of Confirmation one can reflect on the prayer of the Bishop or his delegate.that is said over all to be confirmed.
“All powerful God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, by water and the Holy Spirit you freed your sons and daughters from sin and gave them new life. Send your Holy Spirit upon them to be their helper and guide. Give them the spîrit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of right judgment and courage, the spirit of knowledge and reverence. Fill them with the spirit of wonder and awe in your presence. We ask this through Christ our Lord.” (1299) And over each one is said “Be sealed with the Gift of the Holy Spirit.”
We also reflect on the use of Holy Oil as a sign of spiritual strengthening and spiritual fitness. For centuries oil has been used for massaging muscles of athletes in preparation for competition.