December 16, 2013

TORONTO – This Advent, churches across the Toronto Archdiocese will open day and night on Dec. 11 for a Day of Confessions. It will be the first time the Day of Confessions will be held during Advent in the archdiocese. It follows on the heels of the archdiocese's first Day of Confessions held in Lent earlier this year.

Cardinal Thomas Collins, based on the success of the Lent event, decided he wanted it to occur twice a year, said Neil MacCarthy, director of public relations and communications.

"So he's asked the parishes of the archdiocese to hold a Day of Confessions once during Lent and Advent."

The theme this season is "Let every heart prepare him room."

People think of Lent as more of a season for Reconciliations, said MacCarthy, but the sacrament is "a good way to stay grounded and prepare for Christmas . . . take the rocks out of our pockets and empty that dead weight and enter into a joyful season."

The Day of Confessions website ( includes a how-to guide for individuals, from pre-Confession tips on how to prepare and examine your conscience, to what to expect and pray mid-Confession, to post-Confession penance.

The Edmonton Archdiocese held its first Day of Reconciliation on March 6, drawing large crowds to parishes across the archdiocese.