On May 29, 2012, it was announced that Bishop Samuel Aquila of Fargo, North Dakota was returning to his home diocese of Denver to become its fifth archbishop. Many archdiocesan leaders had an immediate hunch: Restored Order Confirmation was coming to the archdiocese. Bishop Aquila had already restored the order of the sacraments of initiation in Fargo, and even received public praise for it from Pope Benedict XVI during an ad limina visit to Rome. These expectations proved true when in the fall of 2013 the archdiocese began internal preparations to move toward Restored Order Confirmation, becoming the first archdiocese in the United States to do so. By 2020 the process of transition will be complete, though a majority of parishes in the archdiocese have already begun celebrating the Sacraments of Confirmation and First Communion together in the third grade. To assist this move toward restoring the sacraments to the traditional order of Baptism, Confirmation, and First Communion, the Office of Evangelization and Family Life Ministries (EFLM) conducted workshops and created a number of resources. This article will reflect on the process used by the Archdiocese of Denver in this reordering and the impact it has had upon catechesis within its parishes.
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