The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that the two essential elements of the sacrament of Reconciliation are the human part (through the action of the Holy Spirit) and God's action (through the intervention of the Church). These two essential elements are encapsulated in the
Four Parts of Reconciliation outlined below.
- Contrition: an internal attitude of sorrow and repentance.
- Confession: a clear telling of sin for which absolution is requested.
- Absolution: the emphasizing the healing power of Jesus.
- Satisfaction: performance of penance, reform of life and making amends.