The Apostolate of the Laity

Waxing philosophical in communion with one, holy, catholic, and apostolic church.

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Location: Portland, Oregon, United States

I am just a sinner who holds fast to the notion that every human being on the planet is the result of a thought of God.

Saturday, August 05, 2006


Yesterday was First Friday, and as has become my ritual, I went to the sacrament of reconciliation (aka confession.) I try to visit this awesome sacrament twice a month, but with my busy schedule this last month I only went to confession once in July. So when it came time to go to church yesterday, I was more than ready to get to it.

St. Michael's, my second home church as it close to where I work, offers the sacrament every day from 11:30 - Noon. I got to the church early, and decided to pray the rosary as I examined my conscience. As is was a Friday, my focus was on the Sorrowful Mysteries. It was humbling to examine each of my sins in the light of Christ's passion; to know that He had agonized over them; been scourged for them; humiliated for them; and ultimately crucified. I gazed up at the beautiful life-sized crucifix that hangs over the alter and saw both the results of my handiwork and a perfect expression of love.

When Father walked into the confessional, a good number of people sprang from the pews to get in line. St. Michaels has the old-style confessionals kind of like you see in the movies, though I do believe the priest knows my voice by now, and we very much have a dialogue. He heard my sins, counseled me, and then as he gave me absolution, I felt a huge sense of peace wash over me. As I stepped out of the confessional, the world had a new look to it. I liken it to updating the prescription on your glasses. You didn't realize how fuzzy your sight had become until you put on the new pair. In a similar sense I didn't realize how dingy my soul had become until I came clean with the Lord.

The mass that followed continued this peaceful feeling. I found myself hanging on every word and at the consecration my whole body felt as if a million needles were lightly pricking my skin. I get this feeling often at this moment in the mass. I believe it's my own internal reminder that Christ is physically present in the Eucharist as I also get this sensation during adoration.

So if you're a Catholic who hasn't been to confession in awhile my advice to you is simple. Go. Remember Christ didn't come to condemn, but rather to save. Treat yourself to some saving grace. You've earned it, and He wants you to have it. Set aside your pride, embarrassment, fear, whatever, and just go to this sacrament.


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