A steady stream of the faithful at St. Jude Parish in Sarasota waited patiently for their opportunity to take part in the Sacrament of Reconciliation on the last weekend before Holy Week.
This scene was repeated at Parishes throughout the Diocese of Venice after Bishop Frank J. Dewane, with the agreement of the Presbyteral Council, designated April 12 (4-8 p.m.) and April 13 (9 a.m.-noon) as time for Confession at each Parish. This was done to allow the faithful ample opportunity to receive God’s Mercy through the Sacrament of Reconciliation in the Lenten Season.
The response was so impressive at some parishes that the confession times were extended upwards of two hours to accommodate the need.
Maria Cortez of St. Jude Parish tries to go to confession at least once a month but admitted she had lapsed since the start of 2019.
“I let unimportant things get in the way of my love for Christ,” Cortez said. “I am not a saint, and this is good for me to be here. With Holy Week here, I knew it was time to return to the confessional and ask for forgiveness.”
Pope Francis often remarks about the healing power of the confessional and urges the faithful to go as often as possible. Parishes and Missions in the Diocese of Venice have regular reconciliation times throughout the year, please visit www.dioceseofvenice.org for contact information on the parish or mission nearest you.