The sacrament of Reconciliation, also known as Confession or Penance, is a sacrament of healing in the Catholic Church. In this sacrament, a person confesses their sins to a priest and receives absolution and the grace of God's forgiveness. Through the sacrament of Reconciliation, Catholics are able to reconcile with God and with the Church, and to receive the strength and peace that comes from being reconciled with the Lord.
Canon law outlines the requirements for receiving the sacrament of Reconciliation for both children and adults. Here are the requirements for each:
Children who have reached the age of reason (usually around 7 years old) are eligible to receive the sacrament of Reconciliation.
Children must undergo preparation and formation in the Catholic faith, typically through religious education classes or catechesis, in order to understand the importance of confession and the requirements of the sacrament.
Children must have a basic understanding of sin and the need for forgiveness in order to receive the sacrament with reverence and devotion.
Adults who have been baptized in the Catholic Church or in another Christian denomination are eligible to receive the sacrament of Reconciliation.
Adults who have not been baptized in any Christian denomination must undergo the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) in order to be fully initiated into the Catholic Church and eligible to receive the sacrament of Reconciliation.
It is recommended that Catholics receive the sacrament of Reconciliation regularly, typically at least once a year, in order to maintain a strong relationship with God and to receive the grace and peace that comes from being reconciled with the Lord.