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For confession
INTERNATIONAL | SPIRITUAL LIFE
Frequent confession helps strengthen our awareness of our own powerlessness in the supernatural order, and leads us to trust more fully in the grace of God.

confesión
THE SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION

 

No sin is unforgivable, as long as we approach the throne of mercy with a humble, contrite heart. No evil is capable of overpowering God’s limitless mercy.

        Frequent confession, as recommended by the Church, gives us more accurate self-knowledge and makes us grow in Christian humility. It helps us uproot bad habits and it makes our conscience more sensitive, so that we do not gradually become lukewarm or careless. It strengthens our will and leads us to a constant effort to perfect the grace of baptism in our soul, and to identify more closely with Christ. It also brings home to us our own powerlessness in the supernatural life and it helps us to trust utterly in God’s grace.

        Aware that conversion of heart is a permanent requirement if you are to fully accomplish God’s will in your life, go to the sacrament of reconciliation at least twice a month, and make it a living and renewing encounter with Christ and with the Church.

        Make a conscious act of faith in the sanctifying action of Christ, present in the priest (preferably a regular confessor). Be simple and humble. Confess your faults in an orderly, brief, precise, clear and complete manner. Accept the guidance of your confessor with faith, and make sure you do the penance in a true spirit of reparation, as soon as possible. Also offer your daily activities and hardships in reparation for your sins.

        Thank God for the gift of his forgiveness and friendship by resolving to improve your conduct out of love and holy fear of God, and by living a life of greater fidelity to the mission he has entrusted to you.

Examining your Conscience
        Some questions for preparing confession, selected from the Rite of Penance, are offered below as a guideline: they are not intended to be exhaustive, let alone obligatory. You can use these or others more suited to your own needs.

Prayer for Help
My Lord and my God, you know each person’s heart. Give me the grace to examine mine sincerely and to know it truly so I can discover all my sins, confess them well and avoid them from now on. Thus I hope to win your pardon and grace on earth and eternal life in heaven. Grant this through Christ our Lord.
               
Guidelines

I

1. What is my attitude toward the sacrament of penance: Do I sincerely want to be purified, start afresh and deepen my friendship with God? Or is it a burden, to be endured as seldom as possible?

2. Did I forget to mention, or deliberately withhold, any serious sins in past confessions?

3. Did I fulfill the penance I was given? Did I repair any harm done to others? Have I tried to put into practice my resolution to lead a better life in keeping with the Gospel?

II

1. Is my heart set on God, so that I really love him above all else, as a child loves his father, by faithfully keeping his commandments? Or am I completely caught up in the things of this world? Do I have a right intention in what I do?

2. Do I believe firmly in God, who spoke to us through his Son? Do I wholeheartedly accept the Church’s teaching? Do I take an interest in my Christian formation by listening to the word of God, nourishing my faith with appropriate reading, taking an active part in formative activities and avoiding whatever could endanger my faith? Have I always been strong and fearless in professing my faith in God? Do I give evidence of being a Christian both in public and in private?

3. Have I said my prayers in the morning and at night? Is my meditation a genuine conversation of mind and heart with God or is it a purely exterior rite? Have I offered God my difficulties, sufferings and joys? Do I turn to him in times of temptation?

4. Do I respect God’s name, or have I offended him by blasphemy, false oaths or taking his name in vain? Have I shown disrespect for the Blessed Virgin Mary or the saints?

5. Do I sanctify Sundays and holy days of obligation by participating actively, with attention and devotion, in the Celebration of the Eucharist? Have I fulfilled the precepts of yearly confession and of Communion during the Easter season?

6. Are there false gods that I worship by giving them greater attention and deeper trust than I do God: money, superstition, spiritism, or other occult practices?

7. Do I devote as much attention and effort to my growth in holiness as a Christian and my vocation to be an apostle, as I do to my work or to other personal or social interests?

III

1. Do I have a genuine love for my neighbor? Do I use people for my own ends? Do I treat them as I would not want them to treat me? Have I given grave scandal by my words or actions?

2. In my family life, have I contributed to the well-being and happiness of the rest of the family by my patience and genuine love?

3. Do I share my possessions with the less fortunate? Do I do my best to help the weakest and most needy? Do I look down on my neighbor?

4. Does my life reflect the mission I accepted at confirmation and ratified by incorporation into Regnum Christi? Do I have apostolic zeal? Do I take an active part in the Movement’s apostolates? Do I lend a hand with my team’s activities whenever I can? Have I tried, within my means, to relieve the needs of the Church, the Movement and the world? Have I prayed for these, especially for unity in the Church, for the missions, for the well-being, growth and success of the Movement, for an increase in vocations to priesthood and consecrated life, and for peace and justice?

5. Am I generous in contributing my God-given talents (abilities, initiative, time, financial resources, professional contacts, etc.) to support Regnum Christi apostolates and the general good of the Church?

6. Do I appreciate what the salvation of a single soul means? Have I done everything possible to bring my family and acquaintances closer to God and the Church? Have I invited others to join Regnum Christi as a way to grow in the knowledge and practice of their faith, and get involved in the Church’s evangelizing mission?

7. Am I concerned for the good and well-being of the local community, or do I go through life caring only for myself? Do I share to the best of my ability in the effort to promote justice, morality, harmony and charity in human relations? Have I fulfilled my civic duties? Have I paid my taxes?

8. In my work or profession am I hard-working, just and honest, serving society out of love for others? Have I paid my employees a fair wage? Have I kept my promises and contracts?

9. Have I given the lawful authorities due obedience and respect?

10. If I am in a position of responsibility or authority, do I use this for my own advantage or for the good of others, in a spirit of service?

11. Have I been truthful and trustworthy, or have I harmed anyone by deceit, slander or lies, or by revealing a secret?

12. Have I harmed another’s life or limb, reputation, honor, or property? Have I had an abortion or induced someone else to have one? Have I hated anyone? Am I estranged from anybody because of quarrels, insults, snubs, resentment or antagonism? If I have slandered somebody, have I done my best to repair the harm caused? Have I spoken badly of others, making known their faults or failings? Have I thought badly of my neighbor?
 
13. Have I stolen or damaged another’s property? Have I desired it unjustly or immoderately? Have I made restitution or made good the damage?

14. If anyone has harmed me, have I been ready to make peace and to forgive out of love for Christ, or am I harboring hatred and a desire for revenge?

15. Has my selfishness caused me to omit doing something that in justice I should have done for my neighbor?

IV

1. What is the basic course that I have charted for my life? Is the hope of eternal life my inspiration? Do I strive to make progress in the spiritual life by keeping faithfully my spiritual commitments: prayer, reading and meditation on the word of God, reception of the sacraments, monthly retreat, self-denial? Am I striving to control my vices, my evil tendencies and passions, such as envy, gluttony in food and drink, laziness, greed and anger? Have I rebelled against God by being proud or boastful? Have I despised others while overrating myself? Have I imposed my own will on others, without respecting their freedom and rights?

2. What use have I made of my time, my health and strength, and the abilities God has given me? Have I used them to master my instincts and grow in perfection as God wants, or solely for my own selfish advantage? Have I been idle or lazy?

3. Have I endured the sufferings and setbacks of life patiently and calmly? Have I practiced bodily mortification so as to help “complete what is lacking in the passion of Christ?” Have I kept the precept of fasting and abstinence?

4. Have I kept my senses and my whole body pure and chaste as a temple of the Holy Spirit called to share in the glory of the resurrection, and as a sign of God’s faithful love for men and women, a sign seen most perfectly in marriage? Have I dishonored my body by fornication, impurity, unworthy expressions or thoughts, impure desires or actions? Have I indulged in reading, conversation, shows or entertainment that offend Christian and human decency? Have I encouraged others to sin by my own indecency?

5. Have I ever gone against my conscience out of fear or hypocrisy?

6. Have I always tried to act in the true freedom of the children of God following the law of the Spirit, or am I a slave of my passions?

For a son or daughter:
Have I been obedient to my parents, shown them respect and helped them in their spiritual and temporal needs?

For a parent:

Am I careful to give my children a Christian upbringing, help them by good example and exercise my authority with fairness and love? Have I been faithful to my spouse in my heart and in my dealings with others? Have I been faithful to the moral law in my marital relations?

Rite of Penance
                                                                                               
Reception of the Penitent
The priest and penitent may say together:
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
The priest invites the penitent to trust in God, in these or similar words:
V/ May God, who has enlightened every heart, help you to know your sins and trust in his mercy.
The penitent answers:
R/ Amen.
The penitent confesses his sins. The priest may give him counsel and proposes an act of penance. The penitent expresses his sorrow (using the following or a similar text):

Prayer of the Penitent

R/ Lord Jesus Christ, true God and man, my Creator and Redeemer, I love you above all else and I am sorry with all my heart for the wrong I have done and the good I have failed to do. By sinning, I have offended you, the supreme good, worthy of being loved above all else. To make up for my sins, I offer my life, all I do and all I suffer. I firmly intend, with your help, to do penance, to sin no more, and to avoid whatever leads me to sin. Lord, by the merits of your passion and death, take pity on me and give me the grace never to offend you again. Amen.
Absolution

The priest says:
V/ God, the Father of mercies, through the death and resurrection of his Son has reconciled the world to himself and sent the Holy Spirit among us for the forgiveness of sins; through the ministry of the Church may God give you pardon and peace, and I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son,  and of the Holy Spirit.
The penitent answers:
R/ Amen.

Proclamation of Praise of God and Dismissal

The priest may continue:
V/ Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
The penitent then concludes:
R/ His mercy endures for ever.
Then the priest may dismiss the penitent who has been reconciled, saying these or similar words:
V/ Go in peace, and proclaim to the world the wonderful works of God who has brought you salvation.
Or:
V/ The Lord has freed you from your sins. Go in peace.


PUBLICATION DATE: 2008-02-03


 
 


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