It happens tomorrow…
I had really hoped for later in the week, like Thursday. I was working Monday but needed to make my appointment with my parish priest, Fr. Jim. I called the office, left a message, and waited for his call.
Finally around six p.m., he called me back. I’m not fussing about the timeliness of his return call. I’m obviously impatient. I can add it to “my list”. The call was brief. For those who know me, it is a telling conversation.
Fr. Jim: Hi. This is Fr. Jim returning your call.
Me: Good evening, Father. My name is Roy, I’m in RCIA. I need to schedule a day and time for my 1st confession.
Fr. Jim: Ok. What days are you available?
Me: How about Thursday?
Fr. Jim: I can’t Thursday, because ___________.
Me: Oh, well. That’s ok. I will schedule a day with Fr. Larry.
Fr. Jim: Well, what are you doing this weekend?
Me: This weekend? (Gulp)
Fr. Jim: Yes, this weekend.
Me: Well I will be at the RCIA retreat Saturday from 9 to 1 pm.
Fr. Jim: What are you doing Sunday?
Me: Well, I am going to mass on Sunday at 11.
Fr Jim: Great, I’ll see you at Noon!
Me: But, but, I have written my General….I haven’t Examined my con…
Fr. Jim: See you at noon, Roy. Bye!
SHITDARNDARN! Forgive my vulgar language. I’m sure that at least ONE reader may understand this sentiment.
That happened Friday. Today is Saturday. Tomorrow I go to my first confession.
Here is what I have learned.
A sacrament is a sign or wonder, instituted by Christ, to impart (sanctifying) Grace. Christ instituted the Sacrament of Reconciliation. It is an established function of the priesthood. Here are a few scriptures that point to that conclusion:
- John 20:21-23
- Matthew 9:6-8 and Matthew 18:18
- Mark 2:10
- 2 Corinthians 2:10 and 2 Corinthians 5:18
- James 5:15-16
- 1 Timothy 2:5
- Leviticus 5:4-6 and Leviticus 19:21-22 (These OT scriptures could be considered a prolepsis of the priesthood as we understand it today.)
Here are some other scriptures that explain why need the practice of orally confessing sins:
- James 5:14-16
- Acts 19:18
- Matthew 3:6
- Mark 1:5
- 1 Timothy 6:12
- 1 John 1:9
- Numbers 5:7
- 2 Samuel 12:14
- Nehemiah 9:2-3
- Sirach 4:26
- Baruch 1:14
Here are a few scriptures that point to the difference between mortal and venial sins:
Wanting to be thorough has been important to me. Not to the point of obsession, but I do want to be “fearless and thorough from the very start.” I found a wonderful guide. It is called, “A guide to making a good confession.” Thank you, Lord, for Google. It was very helpful in my examination of conscience. It isn’t copyrighted, so I felt comfortable sharing the link with my readers. I am quite sure that it reduced the amount of time needed. It has a list of the Ten Commandments accompanied by a list of grave and lesser possibilities. The way it is formatted allowed me enough room to make necessary notes so that my confession will go smoothly and quick(er).
Many people have asked me if I am scared. The answer is no. This is something I have wanted to do for a very long time. I am uncomfortable. I am sure most adults who have never been to confession would be as well. After much study and prayer, I can see the good that comes from the Sacrament of Reconciliation. This sacrament is at the heart of what Lent is about (to me). Repentance, Penance, and Grace. I hope that as I continue this journey that I can continue to grow in my capacity for these things.
I will keep you posted.