Loading
Confession brings us the joy of God’s forgiveness, says the Holy Father

.- In one of several audiences today, Pope Benedict XVI addressed members of the Apostolic Penitentiary on the state of Confession and lamented that today the world “is losing the notion of sin”.

The Pope made his remarks to a group of prelates that is participating in a week-long seminar on the “internal forum”, that is to say, questions of conscience.  

“What is needed today is to ensure that people who confess experience that divine tenderness for penitent sinners which so many Gospel episodes express with intense emotion", he told the priests.

Referring to the episode of the sinful woman in the Gospel of Luke, the Pope highlighted "the eloquent message that emerges from this Gospel passage: to those who love much God forgives everything. Those who trust in themselves and in their own merits are, as it were, blinded by their own 'I' and their hearts harden in sin. On the other hand, those who recognize themselves as weak and sinful entrust themselves to God and from Him obtain grace and forgiveness. ... What is most important is to make it clear that in the Sacrament of Penance - whatever the sin committed - if sinners recognize it humbly and entrust themselves to the priest confessor, they will always experience the soothing joy of God's forgiveness".

The Pontiff also touched on "a certain disaffection" that exists today around the Sacrament of Penance, and offered some direction to priests who hear confessions saying, "when we insist only on the accusation of sin (although this must exist, and it is necessary to help the faithful understand its importance), we run the risk of relegating to second place what is, in fact, essential, in other words the personal meeting with God, Father of goodness and mercy".

According to a study done in 1998, 30% of the faithful in Italy do not believe that priests are needed in confessionals and 10% of Italian Catholics think that the priest gets in the way of a direct dialogue with the Lord.

Pastors, and especially confessors, must, said the Holy Father, "emphasize the close link between the Sacrament of Penance and an existence decisively oriented to conversion", so that "the grace of the Sacrament may support and nourish the commitment to be faithful disciples of the Lord".

"If this incessant longing is lost", he concluded, "the celebration of this Sacrament unfortunately risks becoming a formality which does not penetrate the fabric of everyday life. On the other hand, if people (though animated by a desire to follow Jesus) do not confess regularly, little by little they risk slowing spiritual rhythm until it weakens and perhaps even stops". 


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic
Apr
16

Liturgical Calendar

April 16, 2014

Wednesday of Holy Week

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 26:14-25

Gospel
Date
04/16/14
04/14/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Is 50:4-9a
Gospel:: Mt 26:14-25

Homily of the Day

Mt 26:14-25

Homily
Date
04/16/14
04/14/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: