The power of God’s graces draws the sinner to Salvation.
In the Sacrament of Penance or Reconciliation, through the priest, Christ meets the sinner, forgives his sins, and gives him again the peace which belongs to God’s children. He also gives the sinner the added power of grace to overcome sin in the future and the strength to be faithful to God’s law of love.
Furthermore, He gives the sinner grace to love God with all his heart and to love his neighbor as himself for the love of God. Jesus also gives the sinner the help he needs to forgive his brothers and sisters just as God has forgiven him, to purge grudges from his life, and to work in harmony with others in God’s family.
As the Good Shepherd, Christ knows His sheep. When one strays, He goes out in search of it. Finding it, He places it on His shoulders and returns rejoicing to the fold. This shows the joy which Christ feels when a sinner has a change of heart.
In the Sacrament of Reconciliation, Christ, through His Church and through the ministry of His priest, comes to us with pardon and peace. In the name of Christ and by the power given to him at ordination, the priest absolves the sinner saying, “I absolve you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”
Christ and the Holy Spirit require us to be sorry for our sins and to have a change of heart. When we encounter Christ in this sacrament, we pledge to reverse our sinful ways. Furthermore, we promise to make genuine moral improvements in our lives. A continual conversion to Christ and His Church is required of us. We must continue to fight our sinful desires and refrain from whatever caused us to hurt God and His family.