The Sacrament of Confession:
The Sacrament of Confession is one of the least understood, and least utilized of the sacraments in the Catholic Church. In reconciling us to God, it is a great source of grace, and Catholics are encouraged to take part of it often. Even if one is not aware of having committed a mortal sin participation is incouraged.
Celebration of Reconciliation
There is opportunity for this Sacrament every Saturday at 4:00 pm, or half an hour before weekday Masses, or you may wish to call the Priest at (306-773-9524) to make an appointment to do so. This is the Sacrament of the healing mercy of Christ through His minister, the priest for sins committed after Baptism.
Jesus instituted this Sacrament on Easter Sunday evening when He said to His Apostles, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained." (John 20: 23). Through this sacrament, we act like the prodigal child who returns home to the Father (Luke 15: 11-32). Catholics are required to go to Confession if they have committed a serious sin. The Church recommends that people go to confession even if they have venial sins. Absolution takes away sin and the priest as a wounded healer too helps to bring the forgiveness and love of Jesus Christ to us through the prayer said over our heads in the confessional. After going to Confession and having our sins forgiven, we are once again reconciled with God and with the Church and the eternal punishment due for our serious sins is forgiven.
Helpful Guide to celebrating the Sacrament of Confession
- Prepare: Prayerfully recall your sins. Some will be specific actions. Some represent a more general pattern of behavior.
- In the confessional: When in the reconciliation room you may either kneel anonymously behind a screen, or sit in a chair where you may speak face to face with the priest.
- Relax in God’s presence: You and the priest may greet each other. Make the sign of the cross. The priest may urge you to have confidence in God. You may start by saying "Forgive me Father for I have sinned it has been (blank) days/months/years since my last confession. I accuse myself of the following sins:
- Confess your sins. If you like, you may discuss the sins you're confessing, so the priest can give you the best counsel.
- Receive a penance: The priest will recommend some action after you leave, to indicate to God the sincerity in your heart. Usually he suggests prayer or self-denial. If it sounds difficult, let him know.
- Pray the Act of Contrition: "O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended you and I detest all my sins, because I dread the loss of heaven and the pains of hell. But most of all because I have offended you, my God, who are all good and deserving of all my love. I firmly resolve with the help of your grace, to confess my sins, to do penance and to amend my life. Amen" But you may also speak simply from your heart. This prayer tells God you're sorry and you'll try to do better.
- Receive absolution: This is the best part. The priest proclaims absolution by laying hands over your head in prayer and God forgives your sins.
- Conclusion: The priest may say, “Peace be with you” and you respond “And also with you”. Or "Give thanks to the Lord for he is good." If so, answer, "His mercy endures forever." Or he may conclude informally as you leave.