Good post today by Sister Mary Martha. It's about confession, sin, guilt and the origin of confessionals. I've been thinking a lot on the subject, as it's getting close to the kids first confessions in January. It amazes me just how much those 8-year-olds understand. There is a lot they don't quite comprehend. They're all different, they're at different reading levels and comprehension levels but they get the basics.
One of my kids came up to me the other day and class and recited his "Prayer of Sorrow"
My God, I am sorry for my sins with all my heart. In choosing to do wrong and falling to do good, I have sinned against you whom I should love above all things. I firmly intend, with your help, to do penance, to sin no more, and to avoid whatever leads me to sin. Our Savior Jesus Christ suffered and died for us. In his name, my God, have mercy. Amen
It's an easy to memorize prayer, probably easier to memorize than traditional "Act of Contrition" we adult Catholics probably all had to learn as kids.
I love the language, the words and the sentiment of the Act of Contrition so much better than their Prayer of Sorrow.
O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended you and I detest all my sins, because I dread the loss of heaven and the pains of hell. But most of all because I have offended you, my God, who are all good and deserving of all my love. I firmly resolve with the help of your grace, to confess my sins, to do penance and to amend my life. Amen.
I have to read the prayer when we pray it at the end of class. While it may be easy to learn, it just trips me up. So, I told the boy who came up to recite his prayer, that I'd recite the one I learned when I was his age at our next class.
For this week's class I want to do a lesson on Christmas. There is one in the book, but I haven't looked at it yet. I have another teaching workshop on Thursday. I got some great ideas I'd like to implement with this next class. I'm hoping that one of the Children's bible storybooks I ordered from Amazon arrive tomorrow and have a good story on the Nativity. I ordered three Catholic bible story books. I may send back one or two of them. Of course, I'll do the lesson from the book, but we also have to start preparing for their First Confession. From what I understand, it will be a Reconciliation service, with the Liturgy of the Word followed by personal confessions, some will be face to face and some in the confessional. I've been told parents are strongly encourage to attend but have been told that they don't. That's pretty sad to me. The kids are scared and intimidated in the first place and when they're parents are lacidaisical about going to confession, what kind of an example is to teach them?
I was so scared that I made my mother go with me. I also went face-to-face with the priest. I can't recall what I told the priest, nor do I remember the priest that I confessed to, but in retrospect, it wasn't a bad experience.
Now, I like the privacy of the confessional.
Image gacked from a anti-Catholic website. Shh!