Christ who died for all men desires that in his Church the gates of forgiveness should always be open to anyone who turns away from sin.

983 Catechesis strives to awaken and nourish in the faithful faith in the incomparable greatness of the risen Christ’s gift to his Church: the mission and the power to forgive sins through the 1442 ministry of the apostles and their successors: The Lord wills that his disciples possess a tremendous power: that his lowly servants accomplish in his name all that he did when he was on 1465 earth.529 Priests have received from God a power that he has given neither to angels nor to archangels... God above confirms what priests do here below.530 Were there no forgiveness of sins in the Church, there would be no hope of life to come or eternal liberation. Let us thank God who has given his Church such a gift.53’


984 The Creed links ‘the forgiveness of sins’ with its profession offaith in the Holy Spirit, for the risen Christ entrusted to the apostles the power to forgive sins when he gave them the Holy Spirit.

985 Baptism is thefirst and chiefsacrament oftheforgiveness of sins: it unites us to Christ, who died and rose, and gives us the Holy Spirit.

986 By Christ’s will, the Church possesses the power to forgive the sins of the baptized and exercises it through bishops and priests normally in the sacrament of Penance.

987 ‘In the forgiveness of sins, both priests and sacraments are instruments which our Lord Jesus Christ, the only author and liberal giver of salvation, wills to use in order to efface our sins and give us the grace ofjust~fication’ (Roman Catechism I, ii, 6).

Article I I

‘I BELIEVE IN THE RESURRECTION OF THE BODY’ 988 The Christian Creed — the profession of our faith in God, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and in God’s creative, saving and sanctifying action — culminates in the proclamation of the resurrection of the dead on the last day, and in life everlasting.