[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Editor’s note: The Compass asked several priests about their experiences of the sacrament of reconciliation. During these weeks of Lent, we will share some of their reflections here. Since priests both hear confessions and seek the sacrament of reconciliation themselves, they have a unique perspective to share. This week, Fr. Dave Pleier reflects on the following question: What do you believe is the best way to prepare for, and to make, a meaningful and fruitful confession?
How I prepare for my own confession…
After a few moments of quiet reflection, I get out my calendar (now on my phone) and look over where I have been, what I have done, and with whom I have been in contact since my last confession. Then I try to resurrect all of those moments and occasions to see if I treated those people with kindness, compassion and understanding.
Next, I think of what was not on my calendar — all those people I could have visited, the lives I could have touched.
I then check out my own prayer life (liturgical and personal), in terms of both time and depth; my attitudes, in terms of both openness and tolerance; and my generosity level, in terms of both actual contributions to those in need and the spirit with which I have responded to emergencies.
Finally, I talk to a close friend or two and simply ask them what I should confess (since I don’t have a wife or children to remind me). And, almost always, one of them will come up with something I had forgotten.
Then, with a final prayer, I seat myself before one of the confessors at the service of which I am a part, conscious that it is a good witness for the assembly to see that we priests go to confession too.
Fr. Pleier is pastor at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Manitowoc, as well as priest moderator at St. Thomas the Apostle Parish in Newton.
Save[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_message]Priests share their reflections on sacrament of reconciliation
My preparation to hear confessions | By Fr. Scott Valentyn
A few steps to preparing for confession | By Fr. Callistus Elue
How I prepare for my own confession | By Fr. Dave Pleier
Assigning an appropriate penance to help grow in faith | By Fr. Richard Klingeisen
Confession helps me to feel positive about my spiritual life | By Msgr. James Feely
A senior priest reflects on reconciliation | By Fr. Willard Van De Loo[/vc_message][/vc_column][/vc_row]