I took a few days off from posting and I apologize. With the approach of Holy Week plus other busy work at the office I got behind.
Part of the last few days has been the intensified times of hearing confessions. Lent is a season that calls us to repentance, and I have always encouraged people to receive the Sacrament early in the season so that the graces given can take root. Some do just that, but the vast majority put off until the end of the season what we are called to at the beginning. In our region we share in four Penance Services in Advent and Lent at our neighboring parishes. We began last Thursday at Saint Edward's in Herminie and there were five of us who heard confessions for a good hour. On Sunday evening we were at our parish where six of us heard for a good hour. Monday we were at Saint Agnes where eight of us heard from 7:00 pm to about 8:45 pm. And last night was the final gathering where ten of us heard for two hours. Lots of confessions, much grace received, and God's love experienced.
As Father John Harold and I were leaving Immaculate Conception Church last might after two hours of hearing confessions (we were the last ones out the door) someone passed us at the door and said "Is someone still hearing? It's not over, is it?" We both looked at each other and said that no one except the custodian was in the Church and that confessions were over. The person asked who was having confessions tomorrow or the next day, where could they go, was anyone in Pittsburgh still having confessions? We assured the person that we did not know, but that around here this was it. They did not ask us to hear their confession, nor did we offer. Waiting until the last minute is not cool. They left, we left.
This morning I was feeling a bit guilty that I did not offer to hear that confession. The more the day has gone by, the more I am torn between justifying my actions and feeling guilty. So, as I said in the title of this post ... I confess.
All that said, I hope that you approached the Sacrament early and are looking forward to the Triduum with reconciled hearts. I look forward to these three sacred days of blessing.