First Reconciliation and First Eucharist

 

First Eucharist (Communion)

The Christian faithful are to hold the Most Holy Eucharist in highest honor, taking an active part in the celebration… receiving this sacrament most devoutly and frequently, and worshiping it with the highest adoration (Canon 898)

The Eucharist is the source and summit of our Christian life. It is the memorial
of Christ’s Passover, in which his one sacrifice, the perfect act of redeeming love is made present for us. It enables us to be in intimate communion with God.

To receive the sacrament, the child should have the desire to receive Jesus and to be able to distinguish between ordinary bread and wine and the Eucharist as the Body and Blood of Jesus. Children who have been baptized and have completed the process of preparation for First Reconciliation are able to receive their First Eucharist. It usually takes place when a child has reached the age of discernment (7 years of age).

Parents need to contact the parish to request sacramental preparation. To prepare for this sacrament, parents,  and the child or youth must participate in the process of preparation provided by their parish.

 

First Reconciliation (Confession)

To receive the salvific remedy of the sacrament of penance, a member of the Christian faithful must be disposed in such a way that, rejecting sins committed and having a purpose of amendment, the person is turned back to God.
(Canon 987)

Reconciliation involves the examination of conscience, being sorry for them, true intention to change, the confession of sins, forgiveness of sins, and satisfaction
(penance). This sacrament precedes First Eucharist. Both Eucharist and Reconciliation are repeatable sacraments.
When a baptized child has reached the age of discernment (7 years of age), he/she is usually ready to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation for the first time.

With the completion of the seventh year, however, a minor is presumed to have the use of reason. (Canon 97, §2)
After having reached the age of discretion, each member of the faithful is obliged to confess faithfully his or her grave sins at least once a year. (Canon 989)

Parents need to contact the parish to request sacramental preparation for First Reconciliation.
To prepare for this sacrament, parents, sponsors, and the child or youth must participate in the process of preparation offered by the parish.
No official record of the celebration of this sacrament is kept. However, the parish may give a certificate that recognizes the completion of the preparation process. This can be signed by those who prepared the children, rather than the priest.
Reconciliation may be postponed if the pastor, in consultation with the parents, feels that the child is not ready.