Preparing for the Sacrament of Reconciliation
This year, the Sacrament of Reconciliation for children preparing to receive Eucharist for the First Time will take place in the parish over 3 nights as follows:
St Kilian’s Junior School – Wednesday, 4th March at 7:30pm in St Kilian’s Church.
St Kevin’s Boys School – Monday, 9th March at 7:30pm in St Kevin’s Church.
St Kevin’s Girls School – Tuesday, 10th March at 7:30pm in St Kevin’s Church.
Prayers for the Sacrament of Reconciliation
There a number of key prayers that your child will be learning in school and at home in preparation for receiving the Sacrament of Reconciliation for the first time. The document attached includes those prayers and can be learnt with parents/guardians at home.
Songs for the Sacrament of Reconciliation
Below are the videos to some of the songs they are learning this year, especially the songs for Reconciliation. You might like to play one at home and use the song as a prompt to a conversation about the Sacrament.
I’m Sorry God
The Gospel of St. Luke – the story of Zacchaeus
Jesus went on into Jericho and was passing through. There was a chief tax collector there named Zacchaeus, who was rich. He was trying to see who Jesus was, but he was a little man and could not see Jesus because of the crowd. So he ran ahead of the crowd and climbed up a sycamore tree to see Jesus, who was going to pass that way. When Jesus came to that place, he looked up and said to Zacchaeus, “Hurry down, Zacchaeus, because I must stay in your house today.”
Zacchaeus hurried down and welcomed him with great joy. All the people saw it and started grumbling, “this man has gone as a guest to the house of a sinner!”
At dinner, Zacchaeus stood up and said to Jesus, ‘Listen, sir! I will give half my belongings to the poor, and if I have cheated anyone, I will pay back for times as much.’
5 Steps of Reconciliation
In school, the children will prepare for the Sacrament by discussing the good choices and bad choices that they can make in life. They will look at a number of scenarios and work out what is the best thing to do. They will use this as a basis for engaging with the story of Zacchaeus (Luke 19: 1-10). Zacchaeus will help them to see that you can say sorry/forgive others when something wrong is done. The children will apply the story of Zacchaeus to receiving the Sacrament of Reconciliation for the first time. There are 5 steps, or stages, to the Sacrament of Reconciliation that they will learn about and they can be viewed below:
- Examination of Conscience – I realise that I’ve done wrong and feel sorry
- Confession – I am sorry
- Penance – I accept my penance and pray the Act of Sorrow
- Absolution – I am forgiven
- Resolving to Try Again – I try again
Below you can watch 2 videos on the stages of Reconciliation that the children will see in school to help in their preparation for the Sacrament:
Examination of Conscience
There are many types and texts of examination of conscience. Below is an example of one that can be used with the children to help them prepare to receive the sacrament.
- Did you pray to God today?
- Did you do as your teachers and family asked?
- Were you kind to your brothers, sisters, friends?
- Were you lazy?
- Did you steal?
- Did you share your things with others?
- Did you always tell the truth?
- Did you borrow anything without returning it?
Dialogue for First Confession – Step by Step (This is an example and it will vary)
Parent: Father, this is my daughter/son N.
Priest: N. you’re very welcome. (parents/guardian steps back)
Priest: In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Child: Bless me Father for I have sinned, this is my First Confession.
Priest: What ways have you not shown God’s love?
Child: I didn’t show love when….
Priest: Thank you (and he will say a few words of encouragement to your child) and now will you pray your Act of Sorrow?
Child: O, My God. Thank you for loving me. I am sorry for all my sins. For not loving others and not loving you. Help me to live like Jesus and not sin again. Amen.
Priest: N. God the Father forgives you and I absolve you of all your sins, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Priest: Congratulations, you have made your First Confession. (The Priest will shake your child’s hand and invite you to give your child a hug and then return to your seat.)
Videos from Brother Francis DVD
Below are some clips from YouTube on the DVD that the children were shown on the night of the preparation meeting and contain the key messages about the Sacrament of Reconciliation: