Confession as Prayer
During our 2019 parish Lenten retreat, our pastor gave a talk, proposing the idea of approaching confession as prayer. I will attempt to summarize his eloquence from my 2-year-old notes.
We have several names for the sacrament of confession: penance, forgiveness, conversion. Notice each name is really a verb, an action. It is never passive. It requires movement of the mind, heart, and body. This movement, this action, has direction. We can envision the movement as linear, forward, or even upward.
Consider this movement in light of prayer. Our conversations with Jesus should also inspire the movement of our mind, heart, and body. If our prayer life feels stagnant or barren, it is time to move. Find what is blocking the development. Find what sin stands in the way. Pray through the act of confession to remove the barrier of sin as the priest delivers absolution.
What the mind does not want to admit, the heart knows. Humans need correction. Because we do not hear God speak like Moses, we must seek God's representation in our pastors. We need to physically hear the words of absolution so our minds, heart, and soul can be united in movement.
Confession helps us to move as earthly beings, along our spiritual journey, toward becoming heavenly beings when we pass from this life to the next.
The picture is one of the windows in our parish.