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364

Part Two

the bishop and his priests forgives sins in the name of Jesus Christ

and determines the manner of satisfaction, also prays for the sinner

and does penance with him. Thus the sinner is healed and re-es­

tablished in ecclesial communion.

1449

The formula of absolution used in the Latin Church ex-

presses the essential elements of this sacrament: the Father of

mercies is the source of all forgiveness. He effects the reconciliation

of sinners through the Passover of his Son and the gift of his Spirit,

through the prayer and ministry of the Church:

God, the Father of mercies,

through the death and the resurrection of his Son

has reconciled the world to himself

and sent the Holy Spirit among us

for the forgiveness of sins;

through the ministry of the Church

may God give you pardon and peace,

and I absolve you from your sins

in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy

Spirit.

48

VII.

T

he

A

cts of

the

P

enitent

1450

“Penance requires . . . the sinner to endure all things

willingly, be contrite of heart, confess with the lips, and practice

complete humility and fruitful satisfaction.”

49

Contrition

1451

Among the penitent’s acts contrition occupies first place.

Contrition is “sorrow of the soul and detestation for the sin com-

mitted, together with the resolution not to sin again.”

50

1452

When it arises from a love by which God is loved above all

else, contrition is called “perfect” (contrition of charity). Such

contrition remits venial sins; it also obtains forgiveness of mortal

sins if it includes the firm resolution to have recourse to sacramen-

tal confession as soon as possible.

51

1453

The contrition called “imperfect” (or “attrition”) is also a

gift of God, a prompting of the Holy Spirit. It is born of the

consideration of sin’s ugliness or the fear of eternal damnation and

the other penalties threatening the sinner (contrition of fear). Such

48

OP

46: formula of absolution.

49

Roman Catechism

II, V, 21; cf. Council of Trent (1551): DS 1673.

50 Council of Trent (1551): DS 1676.

51 Cf. Council of Trent (1551): DS 1677.

1481

234

431

1822