Gratitude and veneration of the Sacrament of Penance

The Lord looked at the sick man with immense pity: "Have confidence, son," he said to him. And then a few words that astonished everyone: Your sins are forgiven you.

When David sinned and went to prostrate himself at Nathan's feet, Nathan said to him: Yahweh has forgiven you. It was God who had forgiven him; Nathan was simply conveying the message that gave David joy and meaning to his life. But Jesus forgives in his own name. This scandalized the scribes present: This man blasphemes. Who can forgive sins but God alone?

And it is quite possible that the paralytic experienced with special lucidity all his unworthiness, perhaps he understood at that moment, as he had never before, the need to be clean before the most pure gaze of Jesus, who penetrated him to the depths of his soul with deep mercy. He then received the grace of such great forgiveness: it was the reward for having allowed himself to be helped. And immediately, a joy such as he had never before imagined. It is the joy of every contrite and sincere Confession. His paralysis mattered little to him. His soul was clean and he had found Jesus.

The Lord reads the thoughts of all, and He wanted to make it clear, also for those of us who at the end of the centuries would meditate on this scene, that He has all power in heaven and on earth, because He is God; also the power to forgive sins. And he demonstrates this with the miracle of the complete healing of this man.

This power to forgive sins was transmitted by the Lord to his Church in the person of the Apostles, so that she, through the priests, could exercise it until the end of time: Receive the Holy Spirit, whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven; whose sins you withhold, they are withheld.8 Priests exercise this power of forgiveness of sins not in virtue of themselves, but in the name of Christ - in persona Christi - as instruments in the hands of the Lord, as instruments in the hands of the Lord.

Priests exercise the power of forgiveness of sins not in virtue of themselves, but in the name of Christ - in persona Christi - as instruments in the hands of the Lord. God alone can forgive sins, and he has willed to do so in the sacrament of Penance, through his ministers, the priests. This is a subject for urgent catechesis among those around us, which will make it easier for them to approach this sacrament with more love.

Let us take advantage of our prayer today to thank the Lord for having given his Church, our Mother, such immense power: Thank you, Lord, for placing such a great gift so easily within our reach!

This time of prayer can also help us to examine with the Lord how our confessions are going: If we prepare them with a careful examination of conscience, if we encourage contrition in each one of them, if we go to confession as often as we have planned, if we are radically sincere with the confessor, if we strive to put into practice the advice we have received. Today may be a good time to see in the presence of God whom of our relatives, friends or colleagues we can help to prepare for the sacraments. 

Hablar con Dios