Penance & Reconciliation

The Sacrament of Penance is an experience of the gift of God’s boundless mercy.  Not only does it free us from our sins but it also challenges us to have the same kind of compassion and forgiveness for those who sin against us.  We are liberated to be forgivers.  We obtain new insight into the words of the Prayer of St. Francis: “It is in pardoning that we are pardoned.”

Jesus entrusted the ministry of reconciliation to the Church.  The Sacrament of Penance is God’s gift to us so that any sin committed after Baptism can be forgiven.  In confession we have the opportunity to repent and recover the grace of friendship with God. It is a holy moment in which we place ourselves in his presence and honestly acknowledge our sins, especially mortal sins.  With absolution, we are reconciled to God and the Church. The Sacrament helps us stay close to the truth that we cannot live without God. “In him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28). While all the Sacraments bring us an experience of the mercy that comes from Christ’s dying and rising, it is the Sacrament of Reconciliation that is the unique Sacrament of mercy.

From the United States Catholic Catechism for Adults



Are you seeking to recover your friendship with God? Has it been a while since your last confession? No matter how long it has been or what your questions may be, we invite you to rediscover the Sacrament of Penance.

Has it been a while since your last confession? Do you have questions about the Sacrament such as:


  • Its been so long, I can not remember the words…
  • I have committed too many sins, the priest will never forgive me…
  • Does the Church still teach that we have to go to Confession… 
  • What’s the Sacrament even called? Is it Penance, Reconciliation or Confession…


If you have experienced any of these thoughts you are not alone.

The video below can begin to answer some of your questions about the Sacrament of Reconciliation and the Church’s teachings. We invite you to explore this site and contact one of our priests at the Parish Center if you have any question or want to arrange an opportunity to share your story and your questions.

Sacraments 101: Penance (Why We Wonfess)

You can also read the following excellent documents on the Sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation prepared by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. They are in PDF format and can be downloaded and printed:


  • God’s Gift of Forgiveness: A Pastoral Exhortation on the Sacrament of Penance & Reconciliation with instruction on how to go to confession (in  English); y Exhortación Pastoral sobre el Sacramento de la Penitencia y Reconciliación con instrucción para como ir a confesión (en Español).


  • Penance: Reconciled to Right Relationship, Called to Heal and Restore (in English); y Reconciliados con la relación correcta, llamados a curar y restaurar (en Español).


For a Brief Examination of Conscience based on the Ten Commandments, click here.

If you have ever wondered how to make a good confession, Fr. Mike Schmitz, of Ascension Presents, has some solid advice for you. He points out that preparing for a good confession starts when we recognize that being a “good person” in our own eyes is not enough—we are called to holiness, which is something much greater. In this video, Fr. Mike offers four powerful ways we can examine our consciences so that our experience of reconciliation moves us towards that holiness to which we are called.

Making A Good Confession

In Mathew 5:8, Jesus said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” This short film below, produced by Cory Heimann of Likable Art, metaphorically communicates the importance and beauty of confession, showing the parallel between home plate on the baseball diamond and the human soul.

If you haven’t gone to confession in a long time, DO NOT BE AFRAID! We invite you to come home!