Monthly Reconciliation Schedule
St. Francis Xavier: 1st and 3rd Saturdays, 4:00-4:30 pm (right before Mass)
St. Mary Magdalene: every Friday, 8:10-8:25 am (right before Mass)
When we sin, or knowingly do something that is wrong in God’s judgment, we harm our relationship with God, with the Church, and, if we hurt another person, with that person. We are all encouraged to reconcile with another person when we hurt that person. The grace of this sacrament is that it reconciles us with God and with the Church. It is also called the sacrament of penance or confession.
The participant in this sacrament proceeds by approaching a priest and 1) confessing sins. The priest listens and may offer some suggestions to the participant to help that person in the spiritual life. 2) Then the priest assigns a penance, which is an activity for the person which will help bring about conversion. 3) The participant then prays an act of contrition, a prayer which expresses contrition and asks God for grace to avoid future sins. 4) Finally, the priest offers a prayer of absolution, which expresses God’s forgiveness to the person.
No one should feel hesitant to admit to being a sinner or to approach this sacrament. Everyone, even clergy and very holy people, are sinners, and many make frequent use of this sacrament. An essential part of this sacrament is the seal of confession, whereby a priest may not reveal to anyone what was confessed in the sacrament.
Students in our religious education program make their first reconciliation in 2nd grade, before their first Communion. We make this sacrament available in two ways: a monthly schedule for individual confessions (see below), where a priest is in the confession booth during set times; and reconciliation liturgies in Advent and Lent, where a large group of people gathers for prayers and scripture readings, and then several priests are available to hear confessions.