"Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive men's sins, they are forgiven them." —John 20:22-23
In the evening of the day on which Jesus rose from the dead, Jesus came to His disciples, showed them His nail-scarred hands and wounded side, breathed on them, gave them the Holy Spirit, and sent them out (Jn 20:19-22). Jesus sent His disciples out not to just make a general announcement of His resurrection but to specifically invite us to confess our sins and be forgiven (see Jn 20:23; Lk 24:47; Acts 2:38; 3:19; 5:31; 10:43; 13:38).
One of the first acts of the risen Christ was to begin to develop the Sacrament of Reconciliation for the forgiveness of sins. One of the first things we need to do this Easter season is to repent and go to Confession. When we have removed the planks of sin from our own eyes, we can then remove the specks from the eyes of others by calling them to repent, forgive, go to Confession, and be forgiven (Mt 7:5).
Without Confession, our celebration of the Easter season will be aborted and not come to full term. With Confession, we will meet the risen Christ, be sent to proclaim the forgiveness of sins, and celebrate the risen Christ for the full Easter season and for eternity.
Prayer: Father, may my first Confession in this Easter season be life-changing.
Promise: The brethren "devoted themselves to the apostles' instruction and the communal life, to the breaking of bread and the prayers." —Acts 2:42
Praise: Alleluia! Jesus is alive! "This is the day the Lord has made; let us be glad and rejoice in it" (Ps 118:24). Alleluia!
Reference: (For related teaching, order our leaflet, The Secret of Confession.)
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, October 10, 1995
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 13, 1995