The sacrament, previously known as Confession or Penance prior to the Second Vatican Council changing its name, provides an individual the opportunity to encounter Christ’s love and mercy for forgiveness of sins committed against God and the Church. The Church, whose members make up the Body of Christ, is also affected by individual sin.
Every time we sin, we hurt ourselves, other people and God. In the Sacrament of Reconciliation, we acknowledge these sins before God and His Church (represented by the priest). We express our sorrow in a meaningful way, receive the forgiveness of Christ and His Church, make reparation for what we have done and resolve to do better in the future. In a communal prayer service prior to the sacrament, we are face to face with those in our community who we may have offended and with whom we should have good relationship.
The sacrament should not leave you feeling anxious or nervous. It is an opportunity to grow, to improve. Admitting our faults and shortcomings is difficult, and overcoming them for our own good and that of others does take some work. Through reconciliation, God gives us the opportunity to continue working on making ourselves the best we can be, for our benefit and the benefit of others.
This sacrament is available every Saturday from 4:00pm to 5:00 pm in the confessional, which is located in the back of Regina Coeli’s chapel, and 1/2 hour before every Mass, or by appointment with the Pastor.