He sat on the left side of the church. A thick rosary hung from his hand as he prayed, eyes fixed on the crucifix above the altar.
I hated to interrupt him, but he must have sensed me staring. He turned abruptly as if awakened from a deep slumber and said, “Do you want to go to confession?”
It had been a year since I was in a confessional. I blamed it on COVID, but that’s ridiculous. I hadn’t gone because I didn’t want to go. I was afraid, I was embarrassed, I was self righteous. “It’s not like these are the worst sins, I mean God loves me, there are people a lot worse than me, I say the rosary every day…” and on and on and on. Maybe I just didn’t want to stop sinning.
Well, whatever, I finally manned up and went.
I had a whole speech prepared. I’d sort of slide my sins into a new faith-based-manifesto proclaiming my love for Jesus and preempting any admonishment from the priest with a, “…and that’s I why I will go forth and sin no more.”
Instead, I knelt there, spilling out sins and frantically trying to remember the Act of Contrition (FYI it was literally taped on the bench in front of me.)
It was over in minutes. I felt like I had rushed it or that I had forgotten some major sin, but I couldn’t remember anything, so I thanked the priest and went out into the church to say my penance.
By my second Hail Mary I was crying like a baby.
Was it finally being free of what I had been holding onto for the past year? Was I reveling in Jesus’s unending faith and forgiveness for me? Was I proud of myself for finally confessing? Was I ashamed for ever doubting God’s love? Had I, through confession, given myself a second chance to live the life I want, doing the things I know I should?
I encourage you to go. Who knows what weight will be lifted or how loved you’ll feel.
Owner Spowerks LLC