Penance is an experience of the gift of God's boundless mercy.Not onlydoes it [the Sacrament of Penance] free us from our sins but it also challenges us to have the same kind
of compassion and forgiveness for those who sin against us. We are
liberated to be forgivers. We obtain new insight into the words of the
Prayer of St. Francis: "It is in pardoning that we are pardoned."
Jesus entrusted the
ministry of reconciliation to the Church. The Sacrament of Penance is
God's gift to us so that any sin committed after Baptism can be forgiven.
In confession we have the opportunity to repent and recover the grace of
friendship with God. It is a holy moment in which we place ourselves in his presence
and honestly acknowledge our sins, especially mortal sins. With
absolution, we are reconciled to God and the Church. The Sacrament helps us
stay close to the truth that we cannot live without God. "In him we live
and move and have our being" (Acts 17:28).
~from the United
States Catholic Catechism for Adults | en español
For diocesan and parish leaders:
Promoting Participation in the
Sacrament of Penance: Diocesan and Parish Resources