It was only after I had wrote my thought about the sacrament of penance (confession) yesterday that I discovered the Pope’s prayer intention for March is about the Sacrament of Reconciliation. “Let us pray that we may experience the sacrament of reconciliation with renewed depth, to taste the infinite mercy of God.”
In a video the Pope talks about this sacrament. Here are his words:
When I go to confession, it is in order to be healed, to heal my soul.
To leave with greater spiritual health. To pass from misery to mercy.
The centre of confession is not the sins we declare, but the divine love we receive, of which we are always in need.
The centre of confession is Jesus who waits for us, who listens to us and forgives us.
Remember this: In the heart of God, we come before our mistakes.
And let us pray that we may experience the sacrament of reconciliation with renewed depth, to taste the forgiveness and infinite mercy of God.
And let us pray that God may give his Church merciful priests and not torturers.
This last remark of Pope Francis is striking. Fr Fréderic Fornos SJ, International Director of the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network, said of these last words:
“In his apostolic letter Misericordia et misera, at the conclusion of the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy, he invited priests to be like Jesus, full of compassion and patient. It’s a path of conversion for each priest, to be ‘witnesses of fatherly tenderness,’ ‘far-sighted in discerning,’ and ‘generous in dispensing God’s forgiveness.’ He asks that their heart be close to the heart of Jesus, and it’s a grace.”
If you wish you can read more about the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network