Sacrament of Penance

Penance, also known as confession and reconciliation, is one of the sacraments of healing in the Church. The sacrament encompasses four parts: contrition, confession, satisfaction or penance, and absolution. 

Contrition means that we are sorry for our sins, and we intend to try to do better. Confession is the act of stating our sins to a priest. This is always required with mortal or serious sins, but is also a good and pious practice with venial or less serious sins. Satisfaction or penance consists of prayers or particular actions the priest assigns to us to show our sorrow, and to make some amends for our actions. And finally absolution - the words Jesus Christ speaks to us, through the priest - freeing us from our sins. 

Jesus set up this sacrament as a way to heal sin and human weakness. He told the apostles: "Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained" (John 20:21-22). 

Confessions are heard at 4:30 to 5 p.m. every Saturday in the Church  . You may also call  the priest to schedule a special time for the sacrament. 

How to Go to Confession

  • Pray the Act of Contrition prior to going to Confession

Act of Contrition
My God, I am sorry for my sins with all my heart. In
choosing to do wrong and failing to do good, I have
sinned against You, whom I should love above all things.
I firmly intend, with Your help, to do penance, to sin no
more, and to avoid whatever leads me to sin. Our Savior
Jesus Christ suffered and died for us. In His name, my
God, have mercy.

  • Prepare to make a good confession by thinking about your sins. Make a firm commitment, asking God’s help, not to sin again.
  • Rite of Penance

Priest: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Penitent: Bless me Father, for I have sinned. It has been (how long?) since my last confession. (or - This is my first confession.)

These are my sins …

For these and all sins of my past life, I am truly sorry.

The Priest gives you a penance.

The Priest gives you Absolution.

  • Penitent should recite or do penance as soon as possible.



This is the Sacrament in which sins committed after Baptism are forgiven. It results in reconciliation with God and the Church. (US Catholic Catechism for Adults, Glossary)

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