Impact Story: Involving an Entire Congregation in Confirmation for Teenagers

The Rev. Dr. Cynthia Carr was leading a small congregation, the First Church of Christ in Unionville, CT, when she discovered that three high school students needed to be confirmed.

She also discovered that the confirmation curriculum used by the 115-member church was written in the mid-90s, which meant it had no multifaith or multicultural components and wasn’t appropriate for today’s teens.

She decided to build her D.Min. project from that dilemma. “It’s nice when it comes up in the ministry process,” she said.

Initially, she thought she would write a new confirmation curriculum. In the end, she decided to run an intergenerational program for the whole church. She also found ways to measure the outcomes, a critical part of any D.Min. project.

The Rev. Dr. Carr said she came to Hartford Seminary because “I needed a new toolbox.” That new set of tools helped her to meet the needs of a small congregation intent on preventing teenagers from “graduating out” of church.



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