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Until we receive further instructions, we shall not be hearing Confessions by arrangements or request.  If anybody really feels that they need to come to Confession but are not able to get to a priest, especially before participating in our live stream Mass on Sunday and want to make an Act of Spiritual Communion, then we call to mind that the great mercy of God has no limits. In such circumstances where a truly penitent person cannot get to Confession through no fault of their own we can follow the Catechism of the Catholic Church which talks about what a sincere penitential heart can do, ‘When it arises from a love by which God is loved above all else, contrition is called perfect. Such sins remits all venial sins; it also obtains forgiveness of mortal sin if it includes the firm resolution to have recourse to sacramental confession as soon as possible.’  (CCC 1452). Therefore, in the circumstances that are currently in, this is a valid calling for God’s forgiveness of our sins – but it does not replace the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  The penitent must attend confession as soon as they possibly can after this.  Absolution for our sins cannot be given over the phone or skype.

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