“I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist. Return to me, for I have redeemed you.” Isaiah 44:22
The peace of mind and soul which the Sacrament of Reconciliation imparts to us is one for which there is no substitute. It is a peace that flows from a certainty, rather than from an unsure hope, that our sins have been forgiven and that we are right with God.
Sin hurts our relationship with God, ourselves and others. As the Catechism states: The sinner wounds God’s honor and love, his own human dignity… and the spiritual well-being of the Church, of which each Christian ought to be a living stone. To the eyes of faith no evil is graver than sin and nothing has worse consequences for the sinners themselves, for the Church, and for the whole world. (CCC 1487, 1488)
A mature understanding of sin includes reflecting upon our thoughts, actions and omissions as well as examining the patterns of sin that may arise in our lives. With contrite hearts, we are also called to reflect upon the effects of our sins upon the wider community and how we might participate in sinful systems.
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.
If you haven’t been to Confession in a while, the Catholic Church wants to welcome you back, and invites you to participate in this beautiful sacrament of healing. Take a step in faith. You’ll be surprised about how free you feel after taking part in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. So many Catholics describe incredible feelings of peace, joy, relief, and love that they never expected. Jesus is calling you to experience His mercy in this way too.