The Scientist is preparing for his First Holy Communion, which, whether I like it or not, means he’s also preparing for his first Penance. I’m not a big fan of forcing kids who are barely at the age of reason to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation (or Confession as most of us call it) before receiving their First Communion. Personally, I feel as if it doesn’t place enough importance on the sacrament as separate from First Communion prep. For most kids and their parents, it’s just another step on the rode to the “Big Day”. Aside from that, as all our venial sins are forgiven with each reception of the Eucharist, I think it’s just not necessary for the average seven year old (or six year old in his case), as I’m fairly certain most of them haven’t committed any mortal sins. To top it all off, it’s not a step on the grown up path to the Church, R. C. I. A. (the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults). Whether the person in question has been Baptized or not before they are received fully into Holy Mother Church, Confession is not on the menu. If it’s not required for the adults, I don’t think it should be required for children.
That being said, it IS required, so he’ll be making it tomorrow with his “best friend” and cousin. The two of them are so unbelievably adorable in how excited they are to be receiving their sacraments together. They’ve been practicing all week and both my sister and I are seriously praying that everything goes off without a hitch. The Scientist is worried he won’t be able to remember ALL of the sins he’s ever committed. Mind you, he’s a generally good kid, so it’s not like it’s that much to remember. He just worries about these things. I’m worried about him remembering how to say The Act of Contrition properly. I think I’ve finally gotten him to realize the word is “heartily” and not “fartily”, as in, “I am HEARTILY sorry for all my sins.” Yeah, that caused a few giggle fits this week. Mostly, I’m just hoping that he’ll “get” it; that he’ll understand and appreciate the benefits of Confession, and not just see it as a stop on the way to his First Holy Communion.
So, as we get all set for the pre-big day big day tomorrow, please keep them both in your prayers. Oh, and I don’t want this to seem as if I’m anti-Confession. I’m all about Confession, about developing a regular habit and about taking full advantage of all the benefits it offers. I just think it should be a separate set of preparations and should be done after First Holy Communion. I’m just saying.