SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION (CONFESSION)
Normal times (may vary during Holy week and Christmastide):
Saturdays – 10.30am to 11am at St Peter’s
Sundays – 9am -9.20am at St Joseph’s
Mondays – 9.30-9.50am at St Joseph’s
And by request
Confessions for the Sick and Housebound can be arranged. Please phone the Parish Priest on 01723 360358, or speak to your Parish Visitor.
Children will make their First Confession during their course of preparation for First Holy Communion.
“Those who approach the sacrament of Penance obtain pardon from God’s mercy for the offence committed against him, and are, at the same time, reconciled with the Church which they have wounded by their sins and which by charity, by example, and by prayer labours for their conversion” (Catechism of the Catholic Church #1422)
HOW TO GO TO CONFESSION
- Before Confession
Spend a few minutes before your confession. Pray for God’s guidance and examine your conscience. Remember any sins you have committed. We are obliged to mention any serious (or ‘mortal’) sins; and we are encouraged to mention other smaller (or ‘venial’) sins and everyday faults (though don’t be too scrupulous about the latter)
- During Confession
Begin by saying: “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.” and then say: “Bless me, Father, for I have sinned. It is [state the length of time] since my last confession”. Then say very briefly what your state of life is, to help him understand your situation; eg, at school, young, adult, single or married, working or not etc.
Now confess your sins. Finish by saying “these are my sins” so the priest understands you have finished. The priest then may or may not offer some advice. He will then ask you to make an Act of Contrition. There are a few ways of saying this. Here is one authorised and commonly used example:
Act of Contrition: O my God, I am sorry and beg pardon for all my sins, and detest them above all things, because they deserve Thy dreadful punishments, because they have crucified my loving Saviour Jesus Christ, and most of all because they offend Thine infinite goodness; and I firmly resolve, by the help of Thy grace,
never to offend Thee again, and carefully to avoid the occasions of sin. Amen.
It is called the Sacrament of Conversion because it makes sacramentally present Jesus’ call to conversion, the first step in returning to the Father from whom one has strayed by sin.
It is called the Sacrament of Penance, since it consecrates the Christian sinner’s personal and ecclesial steps of conversion, penance, and satisfaction.
It is called the Sacrament of Confession, since the disclosure or confession of sins to a priest is an essential element of this sacrament. In a profound sense it is also a “confession” – acknowledgement and praise – of the holiness of God and of his mercy toward sinful man.
It is called the Sacrament of Forgiveness, since by the priest’s sacramental absolution God grants the penitent “pardon and peace.”
It is called the Sacrament of Reconciliation, because it imparts to the sinner the live of God who reconciles: “Be reconciled to God.”7 He who lives by God’s merciful love is ready to respond to the Lord’s call: “Go; first be reconciled to your brother.”
Catechism of the Catholic Church Nos. 1423-424