In the current issue of the Lutheran Witness, there is an article about private confession and absolution. This practice is probably unfamiliar to many of the readers of my blog. Why would you need to do it privately? Don’t we do it every Sunday in church, publicly? Isn’t that a Roman Catholic practice? Who would do that anyway? Most Lutherans probably don’t realize it’s something that is available to you with your pastor. As a called and ordained servant of the Lord, I have the responsibility and authority to tell you that you are forgiven when sin and guilt and Satan just won’t leave you alone. When I can look you in the eye, remind you of what Jesus suffered and died for on the cross, and tell you you’re free from your sin, it is a powerful and liberating moment. And just so you know, I have had people come to me for this very reason. Old and young, teens and octogenarians. No matter where you are in life, it is a precious gift from our Lord.