The Word Among Us

June 2014 Issue

Come into the Light

The Light Is On for You

Come into the Light: The Light Is On for You

It’s simple. It’s free. It takes hardly any time. And it makes for a happier life. That’s because the “it” is the Sacrament of Reconciliation, a healing and transforming encounter with Jesus, the Good Shepherd.

If confession is such a blessing, though, why isn’t everyone flocking into the confessional more often?

Part of the problem, suggests Cardinal Donald Wuerl, is a lack of knowledge about what this under-appreciated sacrament is and does. To meet that need, he has written an “all you need to know” guide, The Light Is On for You: The Life-Changing Power of Confession. Its ten chapters address the most common—and some uncommon—questions a person might have about Reconciliation, from the theological (“Why go?” and “Why confess to a priest?”) to the practical: how to prepare, what to do (ten simple steps, beginning with “showing up”), and what to say. While Cardinal Wuerl covers the basics, he also offers thought-provoking reflections on subjects like God’s mercy, conversion, and the fruits of confession. Short personal witnesses “from the pews” at the end of each chapter make the subject matter come alive.

As Cardinal Wuerl makes clear, God keeps the light on for us. He is always waiting, always eager “to give us mercy, healing, peace, joy,. . . and love. He waits, in fact, to give us everything he has.”

The Light Is On for You: The Life-Changing Power of Confession, by Cardinal Donald Wuerl (softcover, 168 pp.), is available from The Word Among Us online at