PORTLAND — All Catholics around Maine are invited to experience God’s mercy and forgiveness through the Sacrament of Reconciliation at “The Light is On for You” from Monday, Dec. 16, to Friday, Dec. 20, at parishes around the state.

Bishop Richard J. Malone, Apostolic Administrator for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, has announced that during the Advent season, in preparation for the upcoming celebration of Christmas, each parish in the diocese will offer confessions on at least three evenings during that week. Here is a link to the list of parishes and the dates and times that they will be observing “The Light is On for You.” The list will be updated regularly at http://portlanddiocese.net/light-is-on-parishes.

In the Catholic faith, reconciliation, which is also known as penance or confession, is one of the sacraments of healing given to the Church by Jesus. The penitent, the person who confesses his or her sins with sincere contrition, receives absolution from the priest, whose ministry in the name and person of Jesus effectively extends his forgiveness, and thus reconciles the individual to the Lord and his Church. The “seal of confession” guarantees the absolute confidentiality of both the penitent and the sins.

For more information about “The Light is On for You,” contact Dave Guthro, communications director for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland at 321-7810 or at [email protected].