Reconciliation

Reconciliation, also known as Penance or Confession, is one of the two Sacraments of Healing. Reconciliation allows for spiritual healing and absolution for people who have distanced themselves from God through sin.

Why is it important to go to confession?

Doesn’t God already know I’m sorry for my sins?

Certainly God knows when we are sorry for our sins. And since God’s only relationship with us is one of unconditional love, whenever we turn to God with a sincere sorrow for sin and a desire to make a new beginning, God is there to meet us with forgiveness. Even with this in mind, there are still three main reasons for going to confession.

  1. Through this sacrament we experience a palpable form of God’s love for us. The priest is present in the confessional NOT to punish or get angry at the person confessing but ONLY to be a concrete, tangible sign of God’s forgiveness and love. He is also there to help us become better by sharing some advice or simply offering to walk with us during our suffering.
  2. There are often times in our lives, when we freely and deliberately chose to separate ourselves from God’s love by committing an act that is seriously evil. In such cases, we definitely cut ourselves off from God and from the church. Our sins not only affect God, but also others, the community. This is why it isn’t sufficient to simply confess our sins directly to God. Through the ministry of the priest, we ask God for forgiveness and reestablish our bond with the community.
  3. Finally, we are obliged to go to confession because participation in the Eucharist is our greatest joy and privilege, as well as a duty (at least once a year, preferably during the Easter season, but that’s just the bare minimum). To participate worthily in the Sacrament of the Eucharist we must be free of mortal sin. Confession is a gift, a means of grace, a way to God, and a way back to God.

Individual confession and celebration of the sacrament of Reconciliation can be of great value even when we have not committed a serious sin. It is a way of taking an honest look at our own lives and “taking inventory” of our relationship with God. “Naming” the tendencies or habits that cause us to drift from that relationship may be the beginning of a process of our recentering our thoughts and actions on God.

The sacrament of Reconciliation should be first and beyond all else a joyful celebration of God’s forgiving and merciful love for us.

Confessions Guide

Restore your relationship with your Father in Heaven.

Confession is your chance to ask God for forgiveness and receive His mercy. Before you enter the confessional, take a few moments to gather your thoughts and think about what you may have done to hurt others and what you can do better as a Christian. A sincere Confession is a chance to renew your soul and open yourself to the Grace of God. The following questions are to help you reflect upon what you need mercy for.
  • Have I rejected or neglected my faith? Have I refused to defend it or been embarrassed by it?
  • Is there any aspect of my faith I do not accept?
  • Have I taken the Lord’s name in vain?
  • Have I experimented with the occult or Santeria?
  • Have I missed Mass on Sundays or Holy Days of Obligation?
  • Have I been impatient, angry, or jealous?
  • Have I fostered resentments or been unwilling to forgive?
  • Have I been verbally or physically violent with others?
  • Have I taken part in, or encouraged an abortion, the destruction of embryos, or suicide?
  • Have I been hateful or gossiped about others?
  • Have I consumed alcohol excessively or taken drugs?
  • Have I looked at pornography?
  • Have I been impure with others or myself?
  • Am I living with someone as though I’m married?
  • If I am married, do I put my spouse first? My children? Am I welcoming to new life?
  • Do I let my work occupy all my time?
  • Have I neglected the poor? Have I been proud or selfish? Do I spend money on luxury instead of others and the Church?
  • Have I told lies? Have I been honest? Have I stolen or cheated?
  • Have I been lazy? Do I try to bring others to God?

An Examination of Conscience

For not considering the religious dimension of my life.
For spending whole days without being aware of Jesus as my Lord, Savior, Brother & Friend
For declaring I was a Christian while living by this world's standards.
For not living according to my Christian convictions because of human respect.
For not having given the Lord a significant part of my day in prayer.

For not deepening my intimacy with Jesus by reading and reflecting on the New Testament.
For not taking care of my religious growth and development.
For doubting the love of God for me and all his people.
For not desiring to be holy as the Father is holy.

For excluding someone from my loving as the Lord loves.
For putting people down rather than building them up.
For preserving or fostering animosity, rancor, or jealousy.
For thinking more of myself than of others.
For not sharing as generously as I might what I have & am with the poorest & with those suffering the most.

For not being faithful to my friends.
For being haughty, cynical, judgmental in my relations.
For deceiving, cheating, stealing, or being less than honest.
For not showing gentleness, kindness, and care to those closest to me.
For abusing God's creation and being careless with the goods of others.

For not listening to others
For not asking their pardon when I hurt them.
For collecting things I don't need while others lack the necessities of life.
For having had a bad rather than good influence on others.
For refusing to extend myself to others in little things.

For indifference, individualism, a lack of enthusiastic participation at the Eucharist.
For being concerned only about gain and not about ministry in my life.
For not developing my natural talents or keeping my mind and body healthy.
For neglecting my duties through laziness or indifference.
For not making efforts to control my impatience or argumentativeness.

For being soft and indulgent and seeking only ease and comfort in my life.
For not considering and treating my body as a member of the Body of Christ.
For having or desiring carnal relations outside the Christian consecration of marriage.
For seeing only the physical reality in the beauty of the human person.
For seeking compensation for sexual experience in daydreams, shows, readings.

For giving way to worry, depression, or self pity.
For contenting myself with a minimum of religious practice.
For not witnessing to others the Lord's goodness to me.
For not showing concern for the Body of Christ by inviting back inactive members or sharing faith with the unchurched.
For weakening the unity of the body of Christ by criticism, negativism, or indifference.

For not valuing and using the Lord's sacrament of forgiveness.
For not forgiving others after the Lord has forgiven me.
For not giving my life totally and daily to the Lord.
For trying to attain holiness by myself rather than through the Lord's power in me.

Por no considerar la dimensión religiosa de mi vida.
Por dejar que pasen los dias sin reconocer a Cristo como Señor, Salvador y Amigo.
Por decir que soy Cristiano mientras vivo de acuerdo a los valores del mundo.
Por no vivir de acuerdo a los valores cristianos por culpa del respeto humano.
Por no haber dado al Señor una parte importante de mi tiempo orando.

Por no crecer en intimidad con Jesús leyendo y meditando el Nuevo Testamento.
Por no prestar atención a mi crecimiento y desarrollo espiritual.
Por dudar del amor y la atención de Dios hacia mí y hacia otras personas.
Por no querer ser santo como nuestro padre del cielo lo es.

Por excluir a ciertas personas de mi amor y amistad.
Por hacer sentir mal a la gente en vez de tender puentes de amor.
Por mantener y alimentar rencores, celos y desprecios.
Por pensar más en mí mismo que en los demás.
Por no ser generoso especialmente con los más pobres y los que más sufren.

Por no haber sido leal a mis amigos.
Por ser arrogante, cínico y prejuicioso en mi trato con los demás.
Por haber engañado, mentido, robado o no ser honesto.
Por no ser atento y agradable y no prestar atención a los que están cerca de mí.
Por abusar de la creación de Dios o no respetar la propiedad de los demás.

Por no escuchar a otros.
Por no pedir perdón cuando les ofendo.
Por acumular demasiadas cosas cuando a otros les falta lo más necesario.
Por haber tenido una influencia perniciosa en otros.
Por negarme a dar atención a las pequeñas cosas de otros.

Por mi indiferencia, individualismo o falta de entusiasmo al participar en la Eucaristía.
Por estar preocupado solo de acumular y no de compartir lo que tengo.
Por no desarrollar mis talentos naturales y no mantener sanos mi mente y mi cuerpo.
Por abandonar mis deberes a causa de la pereza o la indiferencia.
Por no esforzarme en controlar mi impaciencia y afán de discutirlo todo.

Por ser demasiado comodón buscando solo lo fácil y agradable para mí.
Por no considerar ni tratar mi cuerpo como miembro del Cuerpo de Cristo.
Por desear o tener relaciones carnales fuera de la unión sagrada del matrimonio.
Por fijarme solamente en lo físico como único elemento de la belleza humana.
Por buscar satisfacción sexual en fantasías, espectáculos o lecturas no debidas.

Por dejarme llevar por preocupaciones, depresiones o pena de mí mismo.
Por dar lo mínimo a la hora de practicar mi fe.
Por no ser testigo ante los demás del amor de Dios hacia mí.
Por no compartir mi fe con los que se sienten alejados de la iglesia.
Por debilitar la unidad del Cuerpo de Cristo con críticas y negativismos.

Por no valorar ni usar el sacramento del perdón.
Por no perdonar a otros como el Señor me perdona a mí.
Por no entregar mi vida de verdad, todos los dias al Señor.
Por querer lograr ser bueno por mi cuenta sin contar con el poder de Dios.