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What Is the Sacrament of Reconciliation?

Another name for Confession


A priest in a confession box in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. A Coruna. Galicia
Xulio Villarino / Contributor/Cover/Getty Images

Definition: The Sacrament of Reconciliation is a common name used for the Sacrament of Confession. Whereas "Confession" stresses the action of the believer in the sacrament, "Reconciliation" stresses the action of God, who uses the sacrament to reconcile us to Himself by restoring sanctifying grace in our souls.

Also Known As: The Sacrament of Confession, the Sacrament of Penance

Examples: "Since Vatican II, the Sacrament of Confession has often been called the Sacrament of Reconciliation."

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