The Sacrament of Penance can be the most freeing experience of your life. When you confess your sins you are asking forgiveness directly to our Lord who will absolve your sins if your confession is sincere.
Before entering the confessional:
- Pray to God the Holy spirit for His light and His grace.
- Examine your conscience.
- Be sorry for your sins; try to have the perfect sorrow of love.
- Make a firm resolution not to sin again, to avoid the near occasions of sin.
In the confessional:
- Make the sign of the cross with the priest.
- Say to the priest: Bless me, Father, for I have sinned. It’s been x weeks/months/years since my last confession, and these are my sins.
- Confess your sins openly and candidly. Make sure you mention all mortal sins and, as best you can, the number of times each was committed.
- Listen to the advice of the priest.
- Feel free to ask him any questions about the faith that you are not sure about, such as whether or not something is a sin.
- The priest will then give you a penance.
- Say the Act of Contrition when the priest tells you.
- The priest will then grant you absolution.
After leaving the confessional:
- Promptly do the penance the priest gave you.