IF ANYONE WANTS, I CAN GIVE YOU THE CATHOLIC DEFINITION FROM THE CATECHISM.
HOWEVER, this is what I know. Jesus told the Apostles to forgive sins. He said something like: “Go out and forgive sins, the sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven, the sins you shall retain, they are retained”. In other words, if someone asked an Apostle to forgive their sins and the Apostle didn’t think they were sorry and planning to try to avoid that sin in the future, he would not forgive the sin.
The Catholic Church came to the conclusion that Jesus meant for Priests, Bishops, and the Pope to be able to forgive sins since the take the place of the Apostles. Remember, Peter was made the first Pope when Jesus said,” upon this Rock I shall build My Church” and he was talking about Peter.
ANYWAY, Part of my Faith Journey includes Confession. I made my first Confession and then my First Communion when I was about 7 years old. This is when it occurred to me, and I think most kids, that they are really Catholic Christians. It is always a little intimidating going to church to confess something I did wrong to a Priest. Think about it. Talking to Jesus, whom you do not have to face, is quite a bit easier than looking a Priest( who represents Jesus on earth) in the face and saying you broke a Commandment, or saying that you are doing something wrong and need help to start over.
However, once I tell the Priest what I have done wrong, and what I am trying to correct, and he gives me some advice and a penance, and tells me I am forgiven, a load is off my shoulders and on to Our Lords and I no long have to worry about my sins. The penance can be a few prayers or correcting something that a person has done that needs to be fixed.
Now, I mentioned the other day that The Louisiana Supreme Court ruled that a Priest has to disclose what someone said in Confession. A Lawyer cannot disclose what a client says to him, a counselor can’t disclose what a client said to him and a Priest cannot disclose what a person says to him, no mater what it is. When a Priest becomes a Priest, this is the Oath he makes to God, and it cannot be broken. It has been that way for 2000 years and the Court in Louisiana cannot change that. A Priest would die if necessary to keep that secret. Once I or any Catholic confesses sins to a Priest, they are never mentioned again. And, it always good to realize that the Priest hears so many sins in Confession that there is no way he is going to remember mine or anyones’, and he has heard them all. So a Catholic can feel secure that his/her secrets are safe with the Priest in the Confessional.
This is why I say that we are well on the way to Persecution of Christian in this Country. A Catholic Hospital may have to close, if ordered by Obamacare to perform abortions, and Priest may have to go to jail rather than break his Oath of Confession, is this just the beginning????I hope not, but it doesn’t look good.
PRAY FOR THIS COUNTRY: OK GOD OUR CREATOR,
from your provident hand we have received our
right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
You have called us as your people and given us
the right and the duty to worship you, the only true God
and your Son, Jesus Christ.
Through the power and working of your Hold Spirit,
you call us to live out our faith in the midst of the world,
bringing the light and the saving truth of the Gospel
to every corner of society.
We ask you to bless us
in our vigilance for the gift of religious liberty.
Give us the strength of mind and heart
to readily defend our freedoms when they are threatened;
give us courage in making our voices heard
on behalf of the rights of your Church
and the freedom of conscience of all people of faith.
Grant, we pray, Oh heavenly Father
a clear and untied voice to all your sons and daughters
gathered in your Church
in this decisive hour in the history of our nation,
so that, with every trial withstood
and every danger overcome
for the sake of our children, our grandchildren, and
all who come after us-
this great land will always be “one nation, under God,
indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
We ask this through Christ our Lord.