The goal of My Confession Handbook, Jr. is to help our children, godchildren, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, brothers, sisters, and friends receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation with peace and joy. It is intended to reduce the fear that sometimes accompanies this sacrament, especially the first time.
My Confession Handbook, Jr. hopes to accomplish this with the following components:
- a personal commitment to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation regularly
- a straight-forward examination of conscience
- “My Confession Worksheet,” an easy, step-by-step, how-to while in the confessional, including an Act of Contrition
- a family-centered, Daily Examen to help grow in virtue and prepare for regular reception of the Sacrament of Reconciliation
- a Child’s Prayer of Surrender
- a quick and easy go-to of treasured, traditional Catholic prayers
As a family, we value the Sacrament of Reconciliation and fully embrace the Church’s teaching on this powerful and freeing sacrament. For many, it is an undiscovered gem in the vast treasure chest of our Church. If we can foster a love for this Sacrament in our children when they are young, they will be stronger in their faith and have a well-formed conscience when they enter the world as an adult.
As my spiritual director correctly put it, “As parents, our God-given role is the highest calling! We are called to shape character, instill virtues, and affect the world.” If our children are going to be well-formed, virtuous, and obedient to God in their adult years, we will have to guide their souls into a loving relationship with Jesus in their formative years.
Jesus is love, and He is the King of Mercy. In their humanity, our children’s human weakness, they will need the assurance that they are loved and forgiven, because they most assuredly will fall, again, and again. Each time they fall, Jesus will be there in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, waiting with love and mercy, to pick them up and help them to begin again. Our children will grow, with confidence in Jesus’ mercy and love through this amazing treasure!
As Catholics and children of God, we can approach this powerful sacrament with faith in the words that Jesus shared with St. Faustina.
Daughter, when you go to confession, to this fountain of My mercy, the Blood and Water which came forth from My Heart always flow down upon your soul and ennoble it. Every time you go to confession, immerse yourself entirely in My mercy, with great trust, so that I may pour the bounty of My grace into your soul. When you approach the confessional, know this, that I myself am waiting there for you. I am only hidden by the priest, but I myself act in your soul. Here the misery of the soul meets the God of mercy. Tell souls that from this fount of mercy souls draw graces solely with the vessel of trust. If their trust is great, there is no limit to My generosity.
Go, with confidence, and meet Jesus in the Sacrament of Reconciliation.