You are here FIRST: Catholics can have recourse to an act of perfect contrition in the place of Sacramental Confession with certain conditions.

FIRST: Catholics can have recourse to an act of perfect contrition in the place of Sacramental Confession with certain conditions.


Date: 
Mon, 03/30/2020 (All day) - Thu, 04/30/2020 (All day)

Dear Friends,
Catholics all over the world prepare for Easter through the Sacrament of Reconciliation/Confession during Lent. In the present pandemic situation, we too have followed orders to cancel all the scheduled Parish Penance Service plans. But there is good news about receiving forgiveness without going to confession in this unusual situation. Bishop Checchio has informed us that the Vatican has offered two recourses to the faithful.

FIRST: Catholics can have recourse to an act of perfect contrition in the place of Sacramental Confession with certain conditions. Let me quote:
“Where the individual faithful find themselves in the painful impossibility of receiving sacramental absolution, it should be remembered that perfect contrition, coming form the love of God, beloved above all things, expressed by a sincere request for forgiveness (that which the penitent is at present able to express) and accompanied by votum confessionis, that is, by the firm resolution to have recourse, as soon as possible, to sacramental confession, obtains forgiveness of sins, even mortal ones (cf. CCC, no. 1452).

In reminding your parishioners of this recourse, please also remind them that perfect contrition:
rises from the love of God, who has been grievously offended, requires the sincere desire for forgiveness and requires the ardent commitment to receive the sacrament of reconciliation when available.”

This means, in the present situation it is not practical for us to make the Sacrament of Confession available as we used to, and yet we can certainly receive God’s forgiveness by following these instructions and conditions detailed above.

SECOND: The gift of special indulgence is granted to the faithful suffering from COVID-19 disease, commonly known as coronavirus, as well as to health care workers, family members and all those who in any capacity, including through prayer, care for them. This Plenary Indulgence is granted to the faithful suffering from coronavirus, who are subject to quarantine by order of the health authority in hospitals or in their own homes if, with a spirit detached from any sin, they unite spiritually through the media to the celebration of Holy Mass, the recitation of the Holy Rosary, to the pious practice of the Way of the Cross or other forms of devotion, or, if at least they will recite the Creed, the Lord’s Prayer and a pious invocation to the Blessed Virgin Mary, offering this trial in a spirit of faith in God and charity towards their brothers and sisters, with the will to fulfill the usual conditions (sacramental confession, Eucharistic Communion and prayer according to the Holy Father’s intentions), as soon as possible.

It is a big consolation for us all to know that we can experience forgiveness and God’s mercy in this situation when we cannot have the usual access to the Sacrament of Reconciliation/Confession. We appeal to God’s mercy in this situation when we all are called to take extreme precautions to arrest the spread of coronavirus in order to save our lives and those of others. May God bless us all.
Your brother in Christ,
Fr. Abraham Orapankal