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"I love you, O LORD, my strength, O LORD, my rock, my fortress, my deliverer. My God, my rock of refuge, my shield, the horn of my salvation, my stronghold!"
A Message From Father Doerr
St. Francis of Assisi:The New Confessional
November 4, 2018
As you know, St. Francis has installed a new Confessional Station in the church.
I apologize for not informing you earlier - before the work was begun or completed.
However, it is my hope that, with the rationale provided here, everyone will understand and appreciate the circumstance of our new confessional.
Catechism of the Catholic Church
weighs the need to reconcile sinners with both God and His Church quite heavily (CCC 1462). Reconciliation is an important part of a person’s spiritual growth. A repentant Catholic, who wishes to confess his sins and be restored to life in Christ, cannot do this without the ministry of the priest (Canon 965). This Sacrament is so important, if not essential to a Christian, the Church works to make the experience as trouble-free as possible. In no way does the Church wish the Sacrament to elicit embarrassment, duress, anxiety or even apathy/avoidance.
Here are two relevant laws of the Church for reflection:
to be heard outside the confessional, except for a just reason. A bed-ridden hospital patient, an elderly person in his/her home, or home-bound parishioner, etc. would constitute a “just reason” envisioned by the code that would make confession outside the confessional legitimate.
Confessionals are to be fitted with a “fixed screen” between the penitent and the confessor and should be located in an open place that the faithful can easily access.
Some may not be aware that the priest is given the choice of hearing confessions “face to face” or “behind a screen.” As a matter of fact, the penitent, as well, may not be forced to confess “face to face.” And if a penitent prefers to confess “face-to-face”? The Church has indicated that a penitent has the privilege to confess “face to face.”
However, since both parties have the prerogative to celebrate the sacrament of penance through a confessional screen,
either party may trump the other in this regard
Why the desire for a confession through a screen?
At times, reconciliation can switch to pastoral counseling or spiritual direction. The new confessional will remind both the priest and penitent to focus on the forgiveness of sin in the confessional.
If a person would like to speak at length to the priest,
pastoral counseling or spiritual direction may be available.
An appointment can be made by contacting the office.
There is a human element to the Sacrament. Frankly, a screen protects the spiritual purity of the priest. The best practice is for the priest to hear the confession, provide encouragement or advice, and grant absolution
… at times, there is a need to keep focused on the generous work of Jesus Christ in this Sacrament.
With the new confessional, a priest will no longer be in a closed room with a minor or other persons (with or without a window). The new confessional is accessible, open, and the priest is segregated.
It is a question of prudence.
If, during a particular confession, there is a need to “be known,” we simply ask that you state your name… that will provide the necessary permission for the priest to turn to you, through the screen, and discuss your personal situation.
To summarize, our new confessional is designed to prevent e
, to maintain a
nonymity, and to safeguard the priest. The new furnishing will be immensely practical and safe for all, while reminding us of the seriousness of sin.
Father Brian Doerr
Circle of Grace
Parents of any students that are involved in our Sunday Religious Ed program or High School Program. We will be giving safe environment instruction on the following dates during FEP:
November 18, December 2, and December 9
. Please take a moment to review the documents and video below. If you have any questions please contact Anthony Feola at
Click Here For Safe Environment FAQS
This Week at St. Francis...
Gabriel Project bottles are due this weekend. There will be representatives here after each Mass to collect the bottles. Thank You!
We are low on canned meat especially chicken and beef, fruit, canned vegetables of any kind, and jelly.
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Open Book Quiz (see CCC 464-469 for clues): Jesus is...
Part God and part man.
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A mixture of the divine and the human.
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Inseparably true God and true man.
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I have absolutely no idea. ;-)
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Answer to Lasts Week Question
True or False: As Christians we worship three god's known as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
The Trinity is One. We do not confess three Gods, but one God in three persons, the "consubstantial Trinity". The divine persons do not share the one divinity among themselves but each of them is God whole and entire. (CCC 253)
“The LORD lives! And blessed be my rock! Extolled be God my savior. You who gave great victories to your king and showed kindness to your anointed.”
Psalm 18: 47-51
Sent by Anthony Feola on Friday, November 2 at 5:00PM