By Fr. Michael E. Giesler
This guidebook was written to help Catholic priests appreciate better the beauty and power of Confession and to administer it more effectively to the faithful. Beginning with the Gospel call to holiness for all souls, it points out ways for confessors to serve the faithful by helping them to acknowledge their sins and to confess them sincerely.
Among other features, the book includes:
- Leading insights of classical moral theology on the nature of the human person, including knowledge, free will, and responsibility.
- Practical ideas on how to catechize and motivate people to use the sacrament of God's mercy more frequently.
- Effective experience in giving advice to many different kinds of people: old and young, married and single, penitents with special needs such as recidivists, those with addictions or mental disorders, and the scrupulous or lax.
- Suggestions on helping penitents to make complete and sincere confessions, especially in the area of personal and marital chastity.
- Specific approaches to guide and support persons to live faith, hope, charity, and justice, based on real contemporary situations.
- Three informative appendices which include leading quotes from the Magisterium on the Sacrament of Penance, a description of censured sins from the Code of Canon Law, and excerpts from the Holy See's Vademecum for Confessors.
The book draws ideas from the long and proven tradition of holy and effective confessors in the Catholic Church, along with spiritual insights of saints such as John of the Cross, Philip Neri, John Vianney, and Josemaría Escrivá. In addition, insightful quotations from the recent writings of Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI are offered.
Rev. Michael E. Giesler, a priest of the Opus Dei Prelature, graduated from the University of Notre Dame and obtained his doctorate in theology from the University of Navarre, Spain. He has written three books of historical fiction set in the early Christian period of Rome: Junia, Marcus and Grain of Wheat, all published by Scepter. In addition, he has written a book and several articles on Sacred Scripture, the marks of the Church, and on the writings of Pope John Paul II. A native of Chicago, he is presently chaplain of Wespine Study Center in Saint Louis.