- Jesus gave the Apostles unprecedented power over sin. (Matthew 16:19, 18:18, John 20:23)
- He fully expected them to use it. When sins were forgiven, it was a fulfillment of Luke 7:16 “He who hears you hears Me”
- In 100% of the cases where our Lord explicitly forgave sin, He spoke those words of absolution to the sinner. (Mark 2:5, Luke 5:20, 7:48)
- Saint Paul forgave sins in persona Christi. (2 Corinthians 2:10)
- James admonishes us to confess our sins to one another. (James 5:16)
- In the same fashion as baptism, confession is the examination, or pledge of a good conscience toward God. ( 1 Peter 3:21)
If one claims Christ, why would they avoid or deny this?
From a practical human perspective, IME, most of us don’t do this, at least not consistently.
It requires a certain amount of humility to identify and to freely admit one’s sins, both to self and to others. When we muster the courage to humble ourselves, we begin to truly follow Christ. Virtually every problem in the Church - as in ourselves - comes from a lack of humility. From one of the Christian sages of our time:
“Pride is the child of ignorance, humility the offspring of knowledge.”
- Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
Honestly, more than all the documents and speeches and homilies, etc., etc., I felt this image was his finest act of teaching (I think there’s actually few times he has made this example).
And yet, one could easily point out that all, popes go to confession, just not necessarily in public. I think that I’ll stop there.
What an amazing claim. That humans have a direct unprecedented power over sin by making a confession to a Priest.
Yes , @seyeveritspiritivine , this gift which Jesus gave His Church is truly amazing .
But we never forget the most important person in this Sacrament of Reconciliation , our Lord and Saviour , Jesus Christ Himself .
Undoubtedly. But in this age of gross neglect for the sacrament, and in our world of no attention spans to read many speeches on its importance, the image of the Pope going to confession is very impactful. It’s not unlike St. John Paul II forgiving his would be assassin by a public act, St. Pius V publicly washing the feet of lepers, etc., etc., etc.
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