Catechism of the Catholic Church

358 Part Two acknowledgment 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.” 6 It is called the sacrament of Reconciliation, because it imparts to the sinner the love 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.” 8 II. W hy a S acrament of R econciliation after B aptism ? 1425 “You were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.” 9 One must appreciate the magnitude of the gift God has given us in the sacraments of Christian initiation in order to grasp the degree to which sin is excluded for himwho has “put on Christ.” 10 But the apostle John also says: “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” 11 And the Lord himself taught us to pray: “Forgive us our trespasses,” 12 linking our forgiveness of one another’s offenses to the forgiveness of our sins that God will grant us. 1426 Conversion to Christ, the new birth of Baptism, the gift of the Holy Spirit and the Body and Blood of Christ received as food have made us “holy and without blemish,” just as the Church herself, the Bride of Christ, is “holy and without blemish.” 13 Nev- ertheless the new life received in Christian initiation has not abol- ished the frailty andweakness of human nature, nor the inclination to sin that tradition calls concupiscence, which remains in the bap- tized such that with the help of the grace of Christ they may prove themselves in the struggle of Christian life. 14 This is the struggle of conversion directed toward holiness and eternal life to which the Lord never ceases to call us. 15 6 OP 46: formula of absolution. 7 2 Cor 5:20. 8 Mt 5:24. 9 1 Cor 6:11. 10 Gal 3:27. 11 1 Jn 1:8. 12 Cf. Lk 11:4; Mt 6:12. 13 Eph 1:4; 5:27. 14 Cf. Council of Trent (1546): DS 1515. 15 Cf. Council of Trent (1547): DS 1545; LG 40. 1449 1442 1263 2838 405, 978 1264