Ed’s wonderful reflection on the sacrament of Reconciliation led me to my own thinking.
I don’t have any profound insights to share on this other than a desire to strongly encourage you to build a better habit of visiting the Sacrament of Reconciliation. I often hear of Catholics who don’t attend often, or haven’t been back since they first received the Sacrament! (Pastors haven’t helped this, I cannot call the last time I heard a solid homily in a parish setting on the sacrament – if at all)
There really is no better feeling in life than walking out of a confessional. I can never help but have a smile on my face, and am sometimes surprised when other penitents don’t.
If you think it’s weird, or you don’t feel comfortable, or are afraid the priest is going to judge you, well get over that IMMEDIATELY. I heard a great homily by a former Benedictine abbot who is living with us at the Seminary on sabbatical about this issue. His message was clear: do not discount the overwhelming grace that the confessor receives from the sacrament. By hearing the struggles, the pains, the sorrows, and the suffering of people a . . . → Read More: A clean soul
Confession is a little-understood practice, and I’m not here to say that I understand it very well.
It seems related to this: Once, in a group prayer, the leader asked us to imagine an encounter with Jesus Christ. Then, we were asked to choose our expected response from the following: Would you fall to your knees in worship? Would you run to Him and embrace Him? Would you approach and simply begin speaking to Him? Or what?
I was among the minority who said that they would first fall to their knees, while the greatest percentage said they would first seek to embrace Him.
I was tempted, at the time, to feel a little superior about this. Fools! Don’t you know Who this is? You will be stopped dead (read: dead) in your tracks.
Yet I tried not to feel superior, and reflected on the variation in responses. To me, it remained an almost scientific fact: This is God. If you came within 10 feet of a lightning bolt, you would hit the deck. How much faster will you fall before the Almighty, and never even look up unless you are invited to? My answer was based in psychology, and . . . → Read More: Embrace