Parish of St Thomas of Canterbury Fairford, with St Mary's Cricklade

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Sacrament of Reconciliation

The Church actually only prescribes the need for sacramental confession of mortal - that is serious - sin once a year, in preparation for Easter. So does this ‘let us off the hook’ when we consider that most of the time what we’re guilty of goes under the banner of ‘everyday failings’ or ‘missing the mark’, that failing to do the things we want to and doing the things we hate that St Paul reflects on when he writes of his inward struggle in Romans 7?

Of course we should take our failings seriously because they separate us from living authentically and lovingly as Christians, spoiling our relationship with God and with each other. It is good to reflect that the whole Mass puts us into the deepest relationship with God and with each other, the Body of Christ, but that there is a particular part of the Mass when we specifically acknowledge our failings and ask for forgiveness, that is, the Penitential Rite. This is made particularly clear on a Sunday when we each confess that we’ve sinned in thought and deed, in what we’ve done and what we’ve failed to do; this is something we really should consider, not just let the words trip off the tongue.

But what about individual sacramental confession? There is certainly a place for this too for it is a beautiful sacrament given to us so that we may come to know ourselves –and what we’re capable of, including the ‘grubby grey bits’- more honestly; where we can receive understanding and help, healing and forgiveness in a one-to-one encounter with God through the person of his priest.

Sacramental confession is always available, at the times stated below, but also on request, even just to discuss it.

The Sacrament of Reconciliation is usually available at:

  • St Thomas Catholic Church Fairford: Saturday 9 - 9:30am,
  • St Mary's Catholic Church Cricklade: Sunday 9 - 9:20am.

Please note that times are subject to variation. For confirmation either:

  • Read the latest Bulletin, by clicking on Weekly bulletins, and then clicking on the latest entry, or
  • Read the weekly notices, (which are displayed in the notice board near the front door of each of the churches), or
  • Alternatively contact us; for details, click on Contacting us

You can always contact Fr Michael to request the Sacrament of Reconciliation at another time.