Thursday, 5 February 2009
Confession: It Does What It Says on the Box
Tired of approaching the Blessed Sacrament wondering if you're really in a State of Grace or not? Offended Amighty God by thought, word, deed or inaction? Strayed from the One True Faith for a while and missed Mass on Sunday or Holy Days of Obligation? Given into impure thoughts, sinned against chastity, lied, stolen, been cruel, even killed, slandered, sinned against charity, aided the sin of another by acquiescence or silence, sinned against humility, taken the Lord's name in vain, ignored blithely the needs of your parish or ignored the cries of the poor? Fallen into heresy or error? Forgotten to say your prayers?
Well Confession could be for you. By virtue of Christ's Sacrifice on the Cross, His Resurrection and His institution of the Sacrament when He breathed on the Apostles after His Resurrection and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven," the Catholic Church is offering Confession for free. Yes, that's right, absolutely free. Even if you can't afford a pint of milk, you can still go to Confession.
Look at this man, he has used Confession...
You seem a curious fellow. What has using Confession done for you, my man?
"Well, Confession has changed my life. I'm a bit feeble and give into temptations easy, but using Confession has helped me to know God's forgiveness and helps me to try and live according to His Will. I often find myself going back with similar sins, what can I say, I'm a poor addict, but using Confession has helped me see I can do nothing of my own accord, but depend on God's Mercy and Grace*. It gives me a chance to try again to love God but always knowing I am dependent on His Mercy and Love."
"I used to approach the Blessed Sacrament having done things I really should not have done, leaving me not in a State of Grace, but then I discovered Confession and now use it regularly! It's very rare I would approach the Blessed Sacrament without it now out of a sense of filial love and Fear of the Lord. I had been afraid to use it at first because I was shy about my sins, but because I have a generous-hearted and compassionate Confessor and I know he shows forth Christ's unfathomable mercy in the Confessional, I'm not afraid to use it anymore. The worst thing for me now, would be to receive the Holy Eucharist in a state of mortal sin. I think I'd rather have my index finger chopped off."
Good for you, mate! You may just be a stick man, but God still loves you, you see! Eat better, put on some weight and get some colour in your cheeks! It will do you the world of good!
Look at these souls in our laboratory test. See how when this soul prays or attends Mass without the Sacrament of Penance it is still besmirched by venial or even mortal sins and is still soiled. This soul is no less loved by God, but look at the poor creature, for without Grace he can do very little.
Poor lamb. Then, look at the soul which has used Confession. See how Confessions have washed the soul of its sins and now this soul is humble, clean and pure and desirous to receive its Lord and Master in the Blessed Sacrament. See, he likes Confessions so much he's even writing a book about it. Here, mate, I reckon that one will sell by the truckload.
So use Confession: It does what it says on the box.
*You may be asked to do some small form of penance in reparation for your sins to atone for any offence given to God and injury to your neighbour and to encourage you to spend more time in prayer.
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