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  Freedom and Responsibility


Humanity has the freedom and responsibility to know, love and serve God and to do good works. Like the saints we also have the freedom and responsibility to make the choice to live with courage and virtues and to make this world a better place.


What is a Mortal Sin?  

Mortal Sins:  They are a grave infraction of the law of God that destroys the divine life of the soul of the sinner and constitutes a complete turning away from God.

What is a Venial Sin?  

Venial Sins:  They do not destroy the divine life of the soul but diminishes and wounds it.


Freedom from the slavery of sin

“To live life to the full in freedom we must overcome the test

that this freedom entails, that is, temptation.

Only if he is freed from the slavery of falsehood and sin can the human person,

through the obedience of faith that opens him to the truth,

find the full meaning of his life and attain peace, love, and joy.”

                                                              ~ Pope Benedict XVI, Angelis March 5, 2006

What are the three conditions that are necessary to be reconciled to God?

                             "There are three conditions necessary to be reconciled with God:

                                       contrition, confession, and satisfaction."                                                                                       

                                                                           ~ St Thomas Aquinas


What are the two parts of Contrition?

Examination of conscience and true sorrow for your sins.

1. Examination of Conscience:  Think about how you have sinned.  How did you break the Ten Commandments?  Pray to the Holy Spirit for guidance to know where you have offended God through sin.

2. True Sorrow for Your Sins:   When we sin we are putting Jesus through Calvary.


How do you examine your conscience?


To prepare for confession and examine our conscience we should:




What are some guiding questions for examining your conscience?















What are the steps involved in the Sacrament of Reconciliation?









What does it mean when we say “satisfaction”?

Satisfaction is making amends for your sins through penance and indulgences.


What is Penance?

Penance is assigned by the priest to help repair the harm caused by sin.

What is an Indulgence?

An indulgence is the remission before God of the temporal punishment due to sin whose guilt is already forgiven for either yourself or the dead.

What are the two types of Indulgences?

Partial and plenary.

What is a Partial Indulgence?

A Partial Indulgence removes some of the temporal punishment due to sin.

What is a Plenary Indulgence?

A Plenary Indulgence removes all of the punishment due to sin.

Can you give some examples of Partial Indulgences?

The reading of Sacred Scripture.  A partial indulgence is granted to the faithful, who with the veneration due to the divine word make a spiritual reading from sacred scripture.  Adoration of the Most blessed Sacrament is a partial indulgence.

Can you give some examples of Plenary Indulgences?   

A plenary indulgence is granted when you spend three whole days in a Catholic retreat.  When you pray the Stations of the Cross a plenary indulgence is granted.  Another example is the Recitation of the Marian rosary.  A plenary indulgence is granted if the Rosary is recited in a church or religious community or family group.

Where can you get an extensive list of indulgences?

The Enchiridion of Indulgences issued by the Sacred Apostolic Penitentiary gives many more examples of indulgences that you can  practice.

What is absolution?

Absolution is an essential element of the Sacrament of Penance in which the priest,  by power entrusted to the Church by Christ, pardons the sin(s) of the penitent.   CCC


What are some of the benefits of absolution?                       


1. Forgiveness of sin and restoration of communion with God.

2. The penitent recovers grace.

3. Peace and serenity of conscience.

4. Remission, at least in part, of temporal punishments resulting from sin.

5. An increase of spiritual strength.

6. You can have a spiritual resurrection through the Sacrament of Reconciliation

     and the benefits include: reconciliation with God, remission in part of temporal

     punishments resulting from sin,  peace and serenity of conscience, spiritual

     consolation, and an increase of spiritual strength for the Christian battle.

Why Do You Confess Your Sins to a Priest?

The priest serves as a representative of God and His mercy. Jesus Christ gave His disciples – and  by extension, priests – the power not only to “loose” sins (that is, forgive in God’s name), but to  “bind” (that is, impose penances):

“Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven” Matthew 18:18

Can you recite an Act of Contrition by heart?

                                                                           Act of Contrition

   “O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended you

and I detest all my sins,                      

 because I dread the loss of heaven and the pains of hell;

but most of all because they offend you, my God,

who are all good and deserving of all my love.

I firmly resolve, with the help of your grace, to confess my sins,

to do my penance, and to amend my life. Amen.



“The sacrament of Reconciliation with God brings about a true “spiritual resurrection,”

restoration of the dignity and blessings of the life of the children of God.”

                                                                 ~ Catechism of the Catholic Church, No. 1468

"May we never risk the life of our souls by being resentful or bearing grudges."

                                                                                      ~ St. Greogory of Nyssa

Confession heals, confession justifies, confession grants pardon of sin.

All hope consists in confession. In confession there is a chance for mercy.

Believe it firmly. Do not doubt, do not hesitate, never despair of the mercy of God.

Hope and have confidence in confession.

                                                                                                   ~ St. Isidore of Seville

How to be Reconciled to God

Catholic schools, youth ministry, Catholic home school, and religious education classes have permission to print this material as a supplemental tool, when you purchase the DVD Your Heavenly Father Will Forgive You.  Regular price $16.95,  now on sale for $9.95.

“If you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you.”     Matthew 6:14

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