By Tony DeGol
Confirmation is a double blessing for the Anderson family this year.
Twin brothers Nicklaus and Noah Anderson are among the hundreds of high school juniors receiving the sacrament this Easter season in the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown.
Like any twins, their bond is strong and unique. The loving support of their family sustains them, and so does their bond with their extended family – their fellow Catholics.
“Even though you don’t know them, it’s almost like you do know them because they have the same faith as you, they know the same feeling, they follow the same person,” explained Nicklaus. “It’s really wonderful.”
Confirmation was a culmination in the twins’ journey to grow closer to the Lord.
“I’ve been pursuing a relationship with Christ, and today – receiving the Holy Spirit – feels amazing,” said Noah.
The Andersons are members of Saint Mary (Immaculate Conception) Parish in Altoona, where Bishop Mark celebrated his first Confirmation Mass of the season on April 6.
Because of the pandemic, the Bishop directed that Confirmation Masses this year will occur at each parish instead of regional gatherings at the two Cathedrals and other locations. Pastors may seek delegation from the Bishop to celebrate the sacrament, or they may invite the Bishop to their parish to confirm their candidates.
During his homily at the Saint Mary celebration, Bishop Mark encouraged the young people to use the gifts of the Holy Spirit to the fullest.
“You are still learning about who you really are as a human person, as one who is made in the image and likeness of God,” he remarked. “The Holy Spirit helps us to break through all of the things that prevent us from being who we are. This evening is a new beginning for you in living the life of the Holy Spirit. Ask Him before you leave church tonight to use wisely the gifts of the Holy Spirit that are given to you. Share those gifts. Put them to good use for yourself and for others.”
For Nicklaus and Noah, Confirmation is the beginning of the next chapter of their faith journey.
Both students at Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic High School in Altoona, they want to build on their solid faith foundation.
“I look forward to continuing to go to church and go deeper in prayer,” Noah assured. “That’s what helps me a lot.”
Filled with the Holy Spirit, the Anderson twins, indeed, are doubly ready to take their Catholic faith journey to new heights.
[Photo: Twins Noah (left) and Nicklaus Anderson pose with Bishop Mark after their Confirmation Mass at Saint Mary (Immaculate Conception) Parish in Altoona.]