The Sacrament of Reconciliation
“Jesus said to them again, ‘Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.’ And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained’” (John 20:21-23).
The forgiveness of sins involves four parts:
CONTRITION: a sincere sorrow for having sinned against God and others.
CONFESSION: confronting our sins aloud to the priest.
PENANCE: the priest asks us to make reparation for our sin through prayer and action.
ABSOLUTION: after asking for forgiveness, the priest absolves us of our sins by saying: I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.