The State of Grace

The following in blue italics are excerpts from the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

1415 “Anyone who desires to receive Christ in Eucharistic communion must be in the state of grace. Anyone aware of having sinned mortally must not receive communion without having received absolution in the sacrament of penance.”

We receive sanctifying grace (the life of God in our soul) at Baptism. We lose it if we commit a mortal sin, that is, we are no longer in a state of grace. If we have lost the state of grace by mortal sin, we regain it in the sacrament of penance (reconciliation, confession). 

1861 “Mortal sin is a radical possibility of human freedom, as is love itself. It results in the loss of charity and the privation of sanctifying grace, that is, of the state of grace. If it is not redeemed by repentance and God’s forgiveness, it causes exclusion from Christ’s kingdom and the eternal death of hell, for our freedom has the power to make choices for ever, with no turning back …”

Receiving Communion in the state of mortal sin (when we are not in the state of grace) is the sin of sacrilege, which itself is another mortal sin, as described in the Catechism:

2120 “Sacrilege consists in profaning or treating unworthily the sacraments and other liturgical actions, as well as persons, things, or places consecrated to God. Sacrilege is a grave sin especially when committed against the Eucharist, for in this sacrament the true Body of Christ is made substantially present for us.”


Reconciliation with God

To help us prepare to receive within us the actual Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of our merciful Savior in the Eucharist, our Lord left us another “miracle of mercy,” the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Here, too, Jesus is present for us — for all of us, no matter how great our sins — as the merciful Savior, the fountain of mercy that cleanses, comforts, forgives, and restores to life. Here are some revelations our Lord gave to St. Faustina, as recorded in her Diary, and the according entry numbers:

When you go to confession, to this fountain of mercy, the Blood and Water which came forth from My Heart always flows down upon your soul (1602). 

In the Tribunal of Mercy [the Sacrament of Reconciliation] … the greatest miracles take place and are incessantly repeated (1448). 

Here the misery of the soul meets the God of mercy (1602). 

Come with faith to the feet of My representative (1448). 


I Myself am waiting there for you. I am only hidden by the priest … I Myself act in your soul (1602).

Make your confession before Me. The person of the priest is, for Me, only a screen. Never analyze what sort of a priest it is that I am making use of; open your soul in confession as you would to Me, and I will fill it with My light (1725). 


Were a soul like a decaying corpse, so that from a human standpoint, there would be no hope of restoration and everything would already be lost, it is not so with God. The miracle of Divine Mercy restores that soul in full. Oh, how miserable are those who do not take advantage of the miracle of God’s mercy! (1448). 

To emphasize the importance of these two great sacraments of mercy, our Lord has made their reception a necessary condition for obtaining His promise of complete forgiveness of sins and punishment for those observing the Feast of Mercy. And Pope John Paul II, who repeatedly stressed the importance of God’s message of mercy, has exhorted us that, “the Church of the new Advent … must be the Church of the Eucharist and of Penance” (Redemptor Hominis).

In her Diary, entry 377, St. Faustina says that the Sacrament of Reconciliation not only obtains for us God’s forgiveness, but also heals the soul of the wounds of sin.

We should derive two kinds of profit from Holy Confession:

1. We come to confession to be healed;

2. We come to be educated — like a small child, our soul has constant need of education.

To find out more about the Divine Mercy of Our Lord Jesus Christ, which He revealed to Saint Faustina, please click on the Divine Mercy image below to go to the National Shrine of Divine Mercy website

Reconciliation with God, Divine Mercy