The admittance of children to Holy Communion is a well established practice within the Church of England. Baptized children who have not yet been confirmed, and who are not yet ready and desirous to be confirmed, may be admitted to Holy Communion provided that the conditions set out in the Regulations are satisfied.
Forms & Certificates
Those with parental responsibility must be content that a child be admitted to communion before confirmation.
Permission from the Diocesan Bishop must be obtained before a parish can admit any child to Holy Communion before confirmation. Parishes who received permission before the Regulations were issued in 2007, must re-apply.
Certificates must be given:
Anyone who has been baptised, and is old enough to answer responsibly for themselves, may be confirmed. Although there is no set age for people to be confirmed in the Anglican church, guidance should be sought from the bishop if candidates are ten years old or younger.
Confirmation marks the point in a person’s Christian journey at which they affirm their baptismal faith and commit to a life of discipleship. The confirming bishop, through prayer and the laying on of hands, asks God to empower them to live in Jesus’ way, guided by the Holy Spirit.
Each child formally admitted to Holy Communion must have their name and date of first admission entered in the bright green parish register (pub Canterbury Press) designed for that purpose. Likewise with all candidates for Confirmation.
There are a range of resources for churches and parents to use in relation to Confirmation and Holy Communion.
- The Church of England publishes Guidance on Celebrating the Eucharist with Children. The advice notes that: “The current law states that ‘an alcoholic drink’ may not be given to a child under the age of five except in an emergency and under medical supervision”
- The Diocesan resource centres hold a range of books which can be borrowed – see here
- There are a range of online resources available via the Church of England Going4Growth website – see here