Children in the Archdiocese of Glasgow will not receive their First Holy Communion until they have been confirmed under new guidelines to be introduced next year.
   Most children in Britain currently make their First Communion at the age of seven and Confirmation can be administered at any later age -- for many this is 14 or 15.
   But in a letter to all parishes in his archdiocese, Cardinal Thomas Winning says that by reversing the order in which the sacraments are received, he is returning to the more traditional practice of the Church.
   "The sacraments of baptism, confirmation and Holy Eucharist are known as the sacraments of initiation, that is, of entry into the Church, and the traditional order of reception is as stated," he says. "In our present practice Confirmation is celebrated later than First Communion -- I wish to return to the proper sequence."
   Cardinal Winning concluded: "I am sure these changes, which are the result of widespread consultation, will not only highlight the importance of First Communion, but will also be of great benefit to our young people as they progress towards full membership of the Church."
29 May 00


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