The Confirmation Project
Princeton Theological Seminary received a $1.1 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. to fund a study of confirmation practices in five North American Protestant denominations—the United Methodist Church, the Presbyterian Church (USA), the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the Episcopal Church, and the African Methodist Episcopal Church. Luther Seminary is participating in this grant administered by Princeton Theological Seminary.
The Confirmation Project, Christian Youth: Learning and Living the Faith, will explore the effectiveness of confirmation and equivalent practices for strengthening discipleship in youth. It will also provide churches with examples of strategies and practices to help young Christians grow as disciples of Jesus Christ.
In the end, the goal is to benefit churches and young people. Research outcomes include helping churches gain an understanding of confirmation and equivalent practices across denominations, and helping them assess the expectations and levels of satisfaction of young people, their parents, and ministry leaders.
Qualitative research began in 2014, with site visits and a focus on storytelling about confirmation practices. The project will conclude in December 2016. Terri Elton, Associate Professor of Children, Youth, and Family Ministry, is the lead faculty member from Luther Seminary coordinating the project.