The M+G+R Foundation

The Sacrament of Reconciliation

Clarifying Possible Misconceptions


The purpose of this document is to shed some light on a fundamental issue of Catholicism and other Christian denominations: The “why” of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, how “it works” and its benefits.


The Sacrament of Reconciliation is traditionally called “Confession” in the Catholic Church – East and West. This Sacrament is fulfilled by a prescribed interaction between the penitent and the priest. It consists, after adequate preparation by the penitent, in the confession of all sins committed by act or omission since the last time the Sacrament was entered into. This confession of sins/misdeeds is followed by spiritual instruction/illumination by the confessor priest for the benefit of the penitent’s soul and concluded by the general absolution granted to the penitent by the confessor, granted in the Name of God.

Gallons upon gallons of ink have been utilized in Catholic doctrinal books, catechisms, apologetics, etc. expounding the need, benefit, etc. for such Sacrament. We do not intend to recopy or rewrite all of that. We are going to try to explain, from a very practical point of view, why it really is a good idea.


This Catholic Sacrament obviously is not an absolute requirement for the salvation of the soul. Otherwise, the Catholic Church Administration would be spiritually liable before the Throne of God for all the souls lost as the result of the abysmal Evangelization effort they have put forth in the last 1600 years. (1)

However, as we have written elsewhere (2) about the great merits of the Roman Catholic Faith, the Sacrament of Reconciliation contains all the elements to better assist a soul in finding and keeping its way Home. Of course it has been misused and abused by some of the men who claim to be at the service of God (3)(4), nonetheless, we cannot allow such sad reality to destroy something which at its core is an excellent Evangelization tool.

A post Vatican Council II battle cry, obviously introduced by the enemies of God and not by the Council itself, to demolish the benefits that may be found in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, is: “I don’t need to confess my sins to a man, I confess them to God directly.”

The destructive subtlety hidden in such position may be found at the core of the psychological make up of a human being:

1.– It is very, very hard for a human being to confess to another human being serious, and not so serious, sins committed, while it is quite easy to “confess” such wrongdoing/sins to a deity about which many speak but few have a deep relationship with. [To truly feel deeply sorrowful and contrite before the presence of God —which is simultaneously crushing and uplifting—  is a gift from God granted to very few souls.]

2.– Human psyche can play tricks on itself and satan will take advantage of that; however, when we bring up/share/discuss thoughts/ideas/concerns with another human being (commonly known as “bouncing it off” to, then, “listen as it echoes” from the other human being), if we are playing psychological games with ourselves, they will quickly be exposed and the spiritual damage averted.

We do not need to launch into a psychological treatise to support/prove the above described human condition. It would be as superfluous as launching into a geophysical treatise to prove to the reader that the force of gravity exists. This is precisely what Spiritual Direction is all about – to help a human being see/dissect/evaluate/expose (not to dictate) the real reasons behind our thoughts and intentions, thus avoiding becoming a pawn to satan.

What is the Catholic faithful then to do about the Sacrament of Reconciliation considering the sad moral and legal condition that the Roman Catholic Church finds itself in today? The answer is quite simple: Resort to God! Ask Him to cross your path with the appropriate confessor or a trusted Spiritual Director. In either case: Prepare yourself and the confessor/trusted individual through prayer (5) and allow God to do His part.

What if you are on the proverbial “deserted island” without hope to find any confessor or a trusted individual or one simply does not seem to appear even while standing in Times Square at rush hour? We must then assume that such is the Will of God then...

Your burning desire to make amends with God, through the “proper channels”, and not to be deceived by yourself or the wrong individual, your voluntarily baring your soul to God and seeking His forgiveness and assistance to prevent you from sinning in the future, will be more than sufficient. You will be forgiven, for ultimately —and to the chagrin of certain members of the Roman-Catholic Hierarchy who like to “play God” (6)— it is God who grants the forgiveness and not man.

Penitents, take note: “God”, as the saying goes, “was not born yesterday” and we recommend highly that no one tries to play games with Him and use the above illumination to come up with a creative loop hole to avoid the safeguards of sharing/baring/discussing those “dark secrets” with another human being in an effort to return to the right path to the Father.

Confessors, take note: For the same reason mentioned above, we recommend highly that no one tries to utilize this “power” for personal gain lest you find out the full meaning of: “It would be better for him if a millstone were put around his neck and he be thrown into the sea...” [Luke 17:1-2]

(1) What Went Wrong With Christianity?
(2) Our Position About the Catholic Faith
(3) From the Catechism of the Roman Catholic Church, 2nd. Edition – Paragraph No. 1445
“The words bind and loose mean: whomever you exclude from your communion, will be excluded from communion with God; whomever you receive anew into your communion, God will welcome back into him. Reconciliation with the church is inseparable from reconciliation with God. ”
This statement obviously must be referring to the church as it was intended to be and not the Roman Catholic Church “as is”, for God must be in as much in “communion” with it as He was in “communion” with the equivalent church [The Temple and its Masters] of Our Lord’s time. God will not allow such power to remain with an Administration that lost its way to the point that it eventually will become the Seat of the False Christ. May God have Mercy on His innocent children enmeshed in such deadly trap!
(4) The Papacy – A Historical Perspective
(5) Before engaging in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and before even attempting to make the appropriate examination of conscience, pray in earnest that the Holy Spirit of God shows you your real sins and help you to properly express them to the Confessor. Then entreat the Holy Spirit of God to assist the Confessor in understanding your communication and, in turn, speak precisely the words God wants him to. Then, ask Him again to help you understand, interpret and act upon such words in accordance to His Most Holy and Adorable Will.
God is above all and if a sincere heart approaches Him in such manner, satan will not be able to interfere.
miguel de Portugal will never forget a very specific test God subjected him to so that m de Portugal would be able to prove to Him that he would indeed practiced what he claimed he believed.
It was in Fátima and there was a Sanctuary Chaplain about whom m de P had thought: “He would be the last confessor I would ever go to.” One good day, and without any warning, God tricked m de P into that Chaplain’s confessional. The preparation prayers had been made so m de P proceeded as if in that Confessional was God Himself. After m de P had finished listing his sins/transgressions/faults the advice of the Confessor was: “Now go to the Adoration Chapel and hear what God will say to you.” He then gave him the absolution. m de P went straight to the Adoration Chapel and, upon entering and after the appropriate salutation, Jesus did not stop speaking for at least ten minutes.
The best Sacrament of Reconciliation he has ever had!
Therefore, brothers and sisters, the recommendation being offered here was well tested that day and it is obviously from God.
(6) The True Petrine Ministry

Related Documents

Lesson on the Sacrament of Reconciliation

Several issues: Self Righteousness, Homosexuality, Venial and Mortal Sins, and Reconciliation

The Infallible Guidance by the Holy Spirit

The Prevention of Scandal within a Church

Do Not Despair / Do Not EVER Give Up!

Follow Me – There IS NO BETTER Way!

Jesus Christ Has Condemned the Roman Catholic Church Administrators

Will You Join Me in the Redemptive Effort of Mankind?

Do Not Waste Your Time and Mine in Fruitless Activities – Just Pray and Live My Gospel!

En Español:  El Sacramento de Reconciliación

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