From the Rector, First Sunday of Advent, 11/29/20

PENANCE & ANOINTING

                                                                Lesson 11

1. What is the sacrament of Penance? Penance is the sacrament by which sins committed after Baptism are forgiven through the absolution of the priest.

2. Whence has the priest the power to forgive sins? From Jesus Christ, who said to His apostles and to their successors in the priesthood: “Receive the Holy Ghost; whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them; and whose sins you shall retain, they are retained.”

3. With what words does the priest forgive sins? “I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.”

4. What are the effects of the sacrament of Penance, worthily received? 1) The restoration or increase of sanctifying grace; 2) the forgiveness of sins; 3) the remission of the eternal punishment, if necessary, and also of part, at least, of the temporal punishment, due to our sins; 4) the help to avoid sin in future; 5) the restoration of the merits of our good works if they have been lost by mortal sin.

5. What must we do to receive the sacrament of Penance worthily? 1) examine our conscience; 2) be sorry for our sins; 3) have the firm purpose of not sinning again; 4) confess our sins to the priest; 5) be willing to perform the penance the priest gives us.

6. What is an examination of conscience? A sincere effort to call to mind all the sins we have committed since our last worthy confession. We should ask God’s help to know our sins and to confess them with sincere sorrow.

7. What is contrition? Sincere sorrow for having offended God, and hatred for the sins we have committed, with a firm purpose of sinning no more.

8. Why should we have contrition for sin? We should have contrition for mortal sin because it is the greatest of all evils, gravely offends God, keeps us out of heaven, and condemns us forever to hell. We should have contrition for venial sin because it is displeasing to God, merits temporal punishment, and may lead to mortal sin.

9. How many kinds of contrition are there? There are two kinds of contrition: perfect contrition (sorrow for our sins because sin offends God, whom we love above all things for His own sake) and imperfect contrition (sorry for our sins because they are hateful in themselves or because we fear God’s punishment.).

10. What is confession? Confession is the telling of our sins to an authorized priest for the purpose of obtaining forgiveness.  It is necessary to confess every mortal sin which has not yet been confessed and forgiven; it is not necessary to confess our venial sins, but it is better to do so.

12. Why does the priest give us a penance after confession? The priest gives us a penance after confession that we may make some atonement to God for our sins, receive help to avoid them in the future, and make some satisfaction for the temporal punishment due to them.

13. What kinds of punishment are due to sin? Two kinds of punishment are due to sin: the eternal punishment of hell, due to unforgiven mortal sins, and temporal punishment, lasting only for a time, due to venial sins and also to mortal sins after they have been forgiven.

14. Does the sacrament of Penance, worthily received, always take away all punishment? The sacrament of Penance, worthily received, always takes away all eternal punishment; but it does not always take away all temporal punishment.

15. What are the chief means of satisfying the debt of our temporal punishment, besides the penance imposed after confession? Besides the penance imposed after confession, the chief means of satisfying the debt of our temporal punishment are: prayer, attending Mass, fasting, almsgiving, the works of mercy, the patient endurance of sufferings, and indulgences.

16. What is Extreme Unction (Anointing of the Sick)? Extreme Unction is the sacrament which, through the anointing with blessed oil by the priest, and through his prayer, gives health and strength to the soul and sometimes to the body when we are in danger of death from sickness, accident, or old age.

17. Who should receive Extreme Unction? All Catholics who have reached the use of reason and are in danger of death from sickness, accident, or old age should receive Extreme Unction.

18. What are the effects of the sacrament of Extreme Unction? 1) An increase of sanctifying grace; 2) comfort in sickness and strength against temptation; 3) preparation for entrance into heaven by the remission of our venial sins and the cleansing of our souls from the remains of sin; 4) health of body when it is good for the soul.

19. When does Extreme Unction take away mortal sin? Extreme Unction takes away mortal sin when the sick person is unconscious or otherwise unaware that he is not properly disposed, but has made an act of imperfect contrition.

20. Who can administer Extreme Unction? Only a priest can administer Extreme Unction.

21. When is it advisable to call the priest to visit the sick? It is advisable to call the priest to visit the sick in any serious illness, even though there be no apparent danger of death, as it is the duty of the priest to visit the sick and to administer to them the sacraments they need. -Fr. Brown

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