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6. Confession

1. Confession of sins is necessary for the normalreception of the sacrament of penance. As penance is necessary forthe salvation of one who has committed mortal sin after baptism, soalso confession of these sins is necessary.

2. Confession is not a requirement born of the naturallaw, but is requisite by the supernatural institution of Christ.Our Lord gave his priest the power to forgive sins, setting up thesacrament as a kind of judgment in which testimony (or confession)indicates whether sins are to be forgiven or retained.

3. All who are bound to contrition and satisfaction arebound to confession. And, since all who have sinned are bound tocontrition and satisfaction, all who have sinned are required toconfess. The Church, by her law, imposes on all her children theduty of confession.

4. Confession is to be made in truth and sincerity. Hence,a man would do wrong, no matter what his motive, if he were toconfess a sin he had not committed.

5. A person who has committed mortal sin should confess itas soon as he reasonably can do so. But we cannot say that he isstrictly obliged to take the earliest opportunity ofconfessing.

6. Confession is required of all adult children of theChurch. There is no such thing as dispensation from the duty ofconfessing.

"When the devil has failed in making a man fall, he puts forward all his energies to create distrust between the penitent and the confessor, and so by little and little he gains his end at last."
St Philip Neri

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"Before a man chooses his confessor, he ought to think well about it, and pray about it also; but when he has once chosen, he ought not to change, except for most urgent reasons, but put the utmost confidence in his director."
St Philip Neri

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"Obedience is the true holocaust which we sacrifice to God on the altar of our hearts."
St Philip Neri

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