Confession heals, confession justifies, confession grants pardon of sin, all hope consists in confession; in confession there is a chance for mercy.

–  St. Isidore of Seville

Reconciliation

“What faith confesses, the sacraments communicate: by the sacrament of rebirth, Christians have become “children of God,” “partakers of the divine nature.” Coming to see in the faith their new dignity, Christians are called to lead henceforth a life “worthy of the gospel of Christ.” They are made capable of doing so by the grace of Christ and the gifts of his Spirit, which they receive through the sacraments and through prayer.” Catechism 1692

 

RECONCILIATION AT IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY

At Immaculate Heart of Mary, we offer reconciliation six days a week, or by appointment. Here is our current schedule:

  • Monday – Friday: 8 AM – 825 AM
  • Wednesday: 430 PM – 530 PM
  • Saturday: 8 AM – 9 AM

Learn More

As a result of Original Sin, human nature is weakened. Baptism, by imparting the life of Christ’s grace, takes away Original Sin, and turns us back toward God. The consequences of this weakness and the inclination to evil persist, and we often commit personal or actual sin.

The Sacrament of Reconciliation is one of the most unique and beautiful aspects of Catholicism. Jesus Christ, in His abundant love and mercy, established the Sacrament of Confession, so that we as sinners can obtain forgiveness for our sins and reconcile with God and the Church. The sacrament “washes us clean,” and renews us in Christ.

Here are a few videos on the Sacrament of Confession:

Guide to Confession

Examination of Conscience

Before going to Confession you should make a review of mortal and venial sins since your last sacramental confession, and should express sorrow for sins, hatred for sins and a firm resolution not to sin again.

A helpful pattern for examination of conscience is to review the Commandments of God and the Precepts of the Church:

  • Have God and the pursuit of sanctity in Christ been the goal of my life? Have I denied my faith? Have I placed my trust in false teachings or substitutes for God? Did I despair of God’s mercy?
  • Have I avoided the profane use of God’s name in my speech? Have I broken a solemn vow or promise?
  • Have I honored every Sunday by avoiding unnecessary work, celebrating the Mass (also holydays)? Was I inattentive at, or unnecessarily late for Mass, or did I leave early? Have I neglected prayer for a long time?
  • Have I shown Christlike respect to parents, spouse, and family members, legitimate authorities? Have I been attentive to the religious education and formation of my children?
  • Have I cared for the bodily health and safety of myself and all others? Did I abuse drugs or alcohol? Have I supported in any way abortion, “mercy killing,” or suicide?
  • Was I impatient, angry, envious, proud, jealous, revengeful, lazy? Have I forgiven others?
  • Have I been just in my responsibilities to employer and employees? Have I discriminated against others because of race or other reasons?
  • Have I been chaste in thought and word? Have I used sex only within marriage and while open to procreating life? Have I given myself sexual gratification? Did I deliberately look at impure TV, pictures, reading?
  • Have I stolen anything from another, from my employer, from government? If so, am I ready to repay it? Did I fulfill my contracts? Did I rashly gamble, depriving my family of necessities?
  • Have I spoken ill of any other person? Have I always told the truth? Have I kept secrets and confidences?
  • Have I permitted sexual thoughts about someone to whom I am not married?
  • Have I desired what belongs to other people? Have I wished ill on another?
  • Have I been faithful to sacramental living (Holy Communion and Penance)?
  • Have I helped make my parish community stronger and holier? Have I contributed to the support of the Church?
  • Have I done penance by abstaining and fasting on obligatory days? Have I fasted before receiving communion?
  • Have I been mindful of the poor? Do I accept God’s will for me?

Act of Contrition

After you’ve finished confessing your sins, and the priest has given you any instruction and your penance, the priest will then ask you to recite the Act of Contrition.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church offers a brief explanation of what this is: “Among the penitent’s acts, contrition occupies first place. Contrition is ‘sorrow of the soul and detestation for the sin committed, together with the resolution not to sin again.’”

Essentially it is a personal proclamation that you abhor the sins you confessed and are resolved to lead a life of virtue, doing all that you can to stop committing those and any sins in the future.

Here’s a standard Act of Contrition, which is also available on the pamphlets next to the confessionals, and is posted in the confessional:

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.

X