Fr. Benedict Baur, O.S.B. Frequent Confession. Manchester, NH: Sophia Institute Press, 2022. Paperback $18.95. 256 pages. Available from the publisher.
Have you ever wondered if it’s really beneficial to go to Confession often? The reprint of this long-awaited classic has the answers. It is praised as one of the best books ever written about the many uses of Confession for spiritual growth. Confession, its author makes clear, is not a counseling session. Rather, says the late German Abbot, Benedict Baur, OSB, frequent Confession has "high value in the spiritual life."
Following Vatican II, regular Confession became "necessary" only for those "in mortal sin," it was thought (and sometimes taught). However, Fr. Baur relates how frequent Confession increases sanctifying grace in your soul, gives glory to God, and brings healing, joy, and fulfillment.
In these precious pages, readers will discover how to:
- Overcome deliberate venial sin, root out self-love, and lukewarmness
- “Do penance” properly and avoid self-righteousness
- Distinguish "sins of frailty" from "imperfections"— the latter are not sins, notes Abbot Baur, but cannot be taken lightly
- Define, and practice, "fraternal charity"—i.e. correcting faults of others without being "judgmental"
- Improve your prayer life and receive growth in sacramental grace, fear of God, love of Christ, and fraternal charity
Found in these chapters are stirring reflections on the nature of sin and how it hurts our friendship with God. Penetrating prayers and meditations are provided to help you meditate on Christ’s suffering and foster compunction for the sins of your entire life. Other key chapters include "Spiritual Director, Confessor, and Penitent" and "How to Pray."
Additionally explained is why St. Ambrose noted that it is “easier to find” those who do not commit grave sin "than to find those who do fitting penance for their sins."
“Fr. Baur (OSB) provides many reasons for frequent (about every week or two) Confession. In addition, he lays out a well-reasoned and Scriptural basis for many other means for spiritual growth in the life of a committed Catholic. You'll never have a lack of meditation material if you also bring this book to you in prayer. Outstanding in every way.”
“Love this book! A must read for Catholics to better understand the sacrament of penance.”
“What a wonderful healing Sacrament is confession. This book helps to access and explain this healing sacrament and encouraging content makes a person want to run, not walk to confession. Graces abound and are available for free. All it costs is a bit of self-examination and humility. A treasure!”
Members of the media may send an email to Sophia Institute Press’ Director of Publicity, Sarah Lemieux at slemieux@SophiaInstitute.com to receive a physical or digital copy of Frequent Confession, and/or to schedule an interview.