Every Saturday afternoon at 1:30pm, a line begins to form on the stairs. People are waiting. At 2pm the door is unlocked. We wait 30 seconds - then open the door. We walk into the small room through the foyer. In the summer, it is stifling hot. In the winter, the same. On one side, a line of chairs, the other, standing room only. The room is filling up. Mothers with their children, Nuns in full habit, men standing quietly holding their rosaries. We are waiting. From the next room comes a voice, "I'm ready." The one sitting closest to the door stands up - opens the door, and walks into the confession room. Knees fall onto the kneeler - the metal curtain is drawn to the side - and those familiar words that we remember from our childhood flow easily from our lips "Bless me Father, for I have sinned." We have come home - to Holy Mother Church - where we receive forgivness from Our All Merciful God.
We pray You,
O almighty and eternal God!
Who through Jesus Christ
hast revealed Your glory to all nations,
to preserve the works of Your mercy,
that Your Church,
being spread through the whole world,
may continue with unchanging faith
in the confession of your name.