Why do Catholics confess their sins to a priest?
— Alexis, 7th grade, All Souls Catholic School, Sanford
“Confession” as it is more commonly called is the Sacrament of Penance. This particular Sacrament may only be presided over by a priest or a bishop who can offer “sacramental absolution” (forgiveness) in the name of the Lord Jesus and His Church.
Catholics are encouraged to make an individual examination of conscience and to pray an “Act of Contrition” as a part of our daily lives. Sacramental Confession, when there is serious sin present, is a special part of our lives as Catholics. Catholics are encouraged to celebrate this sacrament at least once a year especially in the Seasons of Lent and Advent.
This month’s question was answered by the Very Reverend Robert Webster, director of Liturgy for the Diocese of Orlando