Reconciliation During the Christmas Season
THE SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION (CONFESSION)
Have mercy on me, God, in your goodness; in your abundant compassion blot out my offense. Wash away all my guilt; from my sin cleanse me. (Psalm 51: 3-4)
The Sacrament of Reconciliation, more commonly known as Confession, is a definitive encounter with the merciful Christ. Penance reconciles the sinner with God and the community of faith. Penance washes away the guilt of sin, restores sanctifying grace, strengthens the recipient to resist temptation and reestablishes the penitent on the road to salvation.
The Sacrament of Penance is available Saturdays after the 9:00 AM Mass and at 3:00 PM to 3:45 PM or by calling the parish office at 508-746-0663. Additional times are made available during the weeks leading up to Christmas and Easter. The faithful are encourage to make this sacrament a regular part of their spiritual life.
Children make their First Confession prior to receiving their first Holy Communion. Children are prepared for these sacraments in the 2nd grade through the Religious Education Program.
How to go to Confession
One of the best online resources for this healing sacrament is this one from Catholics Come Home (http://www.catholicscomehome.org/what-is-the-sacrament-of-confession/ ).
Why Go to Confession?
Saint Pope John Paul II said: If you want to live a life with real joy, true peace of soul and awesome love, an integral part of the answer is frequent confession. The more you are cleansed of sin, guilt and unforgiveness, the more receptive your soul is for all the fruits of the Spirit
In His divine mercy, Jesus called the sinner to realize the sin, to repent of it, and to be reconciled with God and neighbor. Jesus wanted this ministry of reconciliation to continue. Therefore, we go to confession because it is a sacrament given to us by Jesus and He knows it is the best way for us to heal.
Carl Jung, along with Rogers and Freud, is considered one of the fathers of modern psychiatry. He wrote in Modern Man in Search of A Soul (p.264), " Among all of my patients in the second half of life, that is to say over thirty-five, there has not been one whose problem in the last resort was not that of finding a religious outlook on life. It is safe to say that every one of them feel ill because he had lost that which the living religions of every age have given to their followers and not one of them has been really healed who did not regain his religious outlook."
The actual achievements of analytical psychology can be arranged under four headings - Confession, Explanation, Education, and Transformation. "Every stage in our psychic development has something final about it. When we have experienced catharsis with its wholesale confusion we feel that we have reached our goal at last; all has come out, all is known, every anxiety has been lived through and every tear shed; now things will go as they ought.”
Carl Jung noted that even though the majority in Vienna was Catholic, most of his clients were Protestants or Jews. He speculated that the confession of sins accomplishes much of what psychiatry does. Carl Jung was not a religious man. He could best be described as an agnostic. Yet he strongly believed in the great healing power of the confession of sin.
Jesus is the greatest psychologist. He alone knows what the soul needs - a way to cleanse sin, guilt, bitterness, and hatred through His shed blood. That is why He said to His priests, “As the Father has sent me, I now send you.” Then He breathed upon them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven.”