Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Sacrament Of Reconciliation

When we sin we offend God. We hurt people but we also hurt our souls. We ask for forgiveness and help when we sin. God gives us His help or His grace to help us avoid sin.

In the Sacrament of Reconciliation, Jesus comes to forgive our sins and gives us peace from God and the Church which we hurt when we sin. He comes through the priest. Our God is such a loving God that He is waiting with open arms to forgive our sins, all we have to do is ask.

Jesus gave us this Sacrament when He rose from the dead. He gave the authority to His Apostles when he breathed on them and said “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any they are forgiven, if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”

The Catholic Church teaches us that the Sacrament of Reconciliation brings God’s forgiveness to us through the priest. Jesus gave the power to forgive sins to His Apostles and to His Church through the priest.

We call it the Sacrament of Reconciliation because it helps us to make peace not only with God but with people whom we may have hurt.

The priest says to the sinner who is truly sorry for his sins as he raises his hands, “I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Absolve means to forgive.

The most important part of going to Confession is being sorry for our sins. We have contrition or sorrow because our sins have offended God and we do not want to commit them again. We should be very sorry for our sins because they offend God who loves us very much.

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