October 29, 2005. Saturday.

I attended the meeting at (church) for parents of the children who are receiving the Sacrament of Reconciliation. So did sis. Her daughter is also receiving this sacrament.

The cathechism coordinator told us that we parents are the ones preparing our children for this sacrament. We were given workbooks to guide us. At the meeting, she asked us to remember about our experiences in confession. Some parents can still remember their very first one. I don’t. There was this dad who remembered it as a terrifying experience.

There were two confessions that are still kind of vivid in my memory but I didn’t share it with the group. I was kind of embarrassed especially that sis, who is very religious, was also in my group.

I attended Catholic schools in my elementary grades. And I can’t really recall how often I went to confession after the first one. Probably less than five times.

When we left my aunt’s place (sis and I lived there for a few years when Mama migrated to Canada), I haven’t really gone to church regularly. And as everybody knew, I lived in sin, having pre-marital sex with H.

When I came here in Canada, six and a half months pregnant, Mama arranged for me to have a confession with Father R. I was surprised that I didn’t have to go to a confessional box. I was kind of embarrassed to tell him my sins face to face. We were just sitting next to each other in one of the pews at a church in St. Boniface. I told him that my last confession was a very long time ago. I told him about having sex without being married and I remember crying a lot. I felt relieved after that.

I can’t recall now how long it took me again after I had another one. But it must be just before my oldest son’s First Communion because the parents were asked to have communion with their children.

And then the next one must have been the one before my middle son’s First Communion. Now, when I first came here, Mama made sure that I went to church with her every Sunday. But when I moved out from her place, I seldom did. I had small children and there were lots of chores to do and we didn’t have a car and buses were so few on Sundays. So I didn’t bother going. I would only go on special holidays.

So when I confessed. I told these to the priest. And it was also around this time that I had contacted my first boyfriend from the Philippines and we exchanged a lot of emails and I thought about him a lot. My relationship with H has not been great and has been really rocky all these years and we were fighting a lot. I was overwhelmed with emotions when I contacted my first boyfriend. And he was telling me things like I’m such a nice, smart and beautiful person and we were reminiscing about the times we were still together and I thought that I was starting to have feelings for him again. I told the priest, Father M., that I had impure thoughts about this guy other than my husband. And I couldn’t control my tears. They just kept flowing. And we did the confession up there on the altar, my mother and son were behind us, and all these other parents and children. I tried to hide my tears. Father must think that I was really sorry for all my sins and I was. You would think that I have killed somebody with the way I was crying and being really sorry.

After that, I went to church regularly, every Sunday.