Sin cuts us off not only from God but also from each other. Repentance is not simply about straightening things out with God, it is also about admitting that our sins affect how we treat other people.
There are three components to making a good confession a) taking responsibility for our own wrongdoings (at some stage we need to stop blaming our parents, the church, society etc.), and admitting them, b) being genuinely sorry for our sinful actions and c) making things right for ourselves and for the people we hurt.
Take the opportunity to participate in the penitential services in the parish during the Advent and Lent seasons where prayers and scripture readings are followed by the opportunity for individual confession. These services bring out the community dimension of sin and reconciliation. Sin undermines the Body of Christ and the Sacrament of Reconciliation builds it up.
Confessions are also heard after the 10am Mass on Saturday mornings and following the 6.30pm Saturday Vigil Mass, and at other times by arrangement with one of the clergy. It’s best to pop into the sacristy before or after Mass and let the sacristan know that you require confession after Mass.
2 websites worth visiting on the Sacrament of Penance http://www.americancatholic.org/e-News/FriarJack/fj031109.asp and http://www.ancient-future.net/reconciliation.html
On the evening of that day, the first day of the week …..Jesus showed himself to his apostles. He breathed on them, and said to them: ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained’ John 20:19-23