It's early in the morning, still dark out, and I just finished praying through the January's parish calendar in our little friary chapel. Frequently, I simply take the calendar of our parish and look through it day by day, placing this event or that meeting in the hands of the Lord.
As you well know, in about two weeks your child will meet the Lord in the Sacrament of Reconciliation for the first time. As I tried to point out in my little conversation with you, knowing right from wrong, learning how to say I'm sorry, and being able to accept forgiveness are essential if one is to live a happy, holy and fulfilling life. The ability to ask for forgiveness and give forgiveness is essential in any good relationship and that includes our relationship with God.
Please do everything you can to help dispel any fear that your children might have about going to confession. The Sacrament of Reconciliation can be and should be a beautiful moment of grace and peace. You can gently and lovingly prepare them for this sacrament by helping them examine their consciences and learn their prayers. Do everything you can to help them come to the Sacrament of Reconciliation confident and without fear.
Please consider teaching by example. I know that some of you have been away from the Sacrament of Reconciliation for a long time. I know in my own life, that when I have been away from confession for a while, it has been harder to return. If this is the situation you find yourself in - don't be afraid. Take the step and use this beautiful occasion of your Child's first encounter with our Lord's forgiveness to reestablish in your own life the regular practice of the Sacrament Reconciliation. As I told you during our little talk, I personally receive great consolation and encouragement from the Sacrament of Reconciliation and it is a regular part of my life. Sometimes I try to go to confession on a weekly basis and I always have enough to say.
Now for some practical matters: If you don't remember how to go to confession the priests will help you. As you teach your child how to go to the sacrament it will also serve as a great reminder for you. If you have been away for a while please know that no one will yell at you or keep you in line for a long time. We have several guest priests coming and our only purpose will be to offer you the Lord's forgiveness and encouragement. If you have been away a while please consider coming back.
I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for bringing your child to religious education and helping to prepare them for the sacraments. God has so much faith in you that He has placed these beautiful little souls in your loving care what an honor and what a daunting task to be sure!
Please be assured of my prayers for you and your child. If you might want to go to confession before the 15th feel free to call the Office and one of us will be happy to talk with you.
If you have any questions please feel free to click here or call the Religious Education Office at 860-828-1934.
Thinking of you and praying for you
PS. - I'm sorry I never got that tape on the web like I promised. I simply couldn't figure out how to edit it.