Q: I recently attended a diocesan training where it was said twice that sin is not forgiven in the Mass. This is contrary to what I have been taught, that venial sin is forgiven in the Mass. So either my priest is wrong or the speaker was wrong. The speaker was unable to provide resources due to time constraints. As I’m in the midst of all things RCIA, and unable to follow up with either the priest or speaker, your name came to mind.
CCC 1416 Communion with the Body and Blood of Christ increases the communicant’s union with the Lord, forgives his venial sins, and preserves him from grave sins. Since receiving this sacrament strengthens the bonds of charity between the communicant and Christ, it also reinforces the unity of the Church as the Mystical Body of Christ.
Would you clarify this for me and provide resources? Thank you in advance.
A: You are correct that venial sins are forgiven in communion at mass.
The confusion may come from the prayer called “absolution” that comes during the penitential act. The General Instruction of the Roman Missal #51 says “The rite concludes with the Priest’s absolution, which, however, lacks the efficacy of the Sacrament of Penance.”
But that is speaking only about the penitential act – not the reception of communion.