Why when we go in for confession do the priests assign a penance. I was given today to say the divine mercy chaplet. I hope I did it right. I’ve heard of it but never actually done it.


Did you look it up on the internet or somewhere? It’s not too complicated. If you followed the instructions, and prayed it from your heart, you fulfilled your penance.

When we go to confession, if we recieve a penance that we feel we are not able to do, regardless of why, than we need to mention that to the priest and he will give you another penance instead or tell you where to find a particular prayer such as the chaplet that you were given. As far as I know, we are given a penance so that we can leave the confessional and do our penance to keep our mind and thoughts on Christ and the sacrifice He made for us. It helps us grow closer to Almighty. But def. just dont go and skip the penance part. Ask for help if needed.

This passage might be helpful in understanding why we have penance.

From the *Catechism of the Catholic Church:

1471 The doctrine and practice of indulgences in the Church are closely linked to the effects of the sacrament of Penance.
What is an indulgence?
"An indulgence is a remission before God of the temporal punishment due to sins whose guilt has already been forgiven, which the faithful Christian who is duly disposed gains under certain prescribed conditions through the action of the Church which, as the minister of redemption, dispenses and applies with authority the treasury of the satisfactions of Christ and the saints."81
"An indulgence is partial or plenary according as it removes either part or all of the temporal punishment due to sin."82 The faithful can gain indulgences for themselves or apply them to the dead.83
The punishments of sin
1472 To understand this doctrine and practice of the Church, it is necessary to understand that sin has a double consequence. Grave sin deprives us of communion with God and therefore makes us incapable of eternal life, the privation of which is called the “eternal punishment” of sin. On the other hand every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth, or after death in the state called Purgatory. This purification frees one from what is called the “temporal punishment” of sin. These two punishments must not be conceived of as a kind of vengeance inflicted by God from without, but as following from the very nature of sin. A conversion which proceeds from a fervent charity can attain the complete purification of the sinner in such a way that no punishment would remain.84
1473 The forgiveness of sin and restoration of communion with God entail the remission of the eternal punishment of sin, but temporal punishment of sin remains. While patiently bearing sufferings and trials of all kinds and, when the day comes, serenely facing death, the Christian must strive to accept this temporal punishment of sin as a grace. He should strive by works of mercy and charity, as well as by prayer and the various practices of penance, to put off completely the “old man” and to put on the "new man."85

Confession removes the eternal punishment for our sins, however, the temporal punishment remains. That’s where indulgences and penance come in.

God will have heard you and realise your intention is good whether you have the exact right wording is not a problem to God. He sees what is on your heart and that is good.

Please don’t be affraid to ask your priest for a copy of the Divine Mercy Chaplet so that next time you will know where to look for it another time.

Next time he gives you something you don’t know, it really is okay to say to him, that you don’t know that one or how to find it so would he tell you how to find it or he may offer something you do know. So you don’t feel out of it. Priests are there to be asked if we don’t know something. He won’t know you don’t know :stuck_out_tongue:

For how to say it see [/FONT]How to Pray
The Divine Mercy Chaplet

The penance the priest assigns is supposed to be proportionate to the sins confessed. We receive one in order to help make up for the temporal punishment due to our sins. Of course, our sin is so abhorrent to God that the little penance we’re given can’t usually make up for all the punishment, therefore we have to either make up for it in this life through suffering and acts of penance, and/or have it burned out of us in purgatory.

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