His hand on mine

His hand on mine

“It wasn’t easy to go to confession that day. I was twenty-two years old, and despite the fact that time has passed since then, I still remember it well. I was at the Shrine of Loreto. I was drawing near to this sacrament, prepared to receive a scolding and to be humiliated; I would never have thought that I could instead receive a precious gift. I felt alone, as if I had to appear before a judge. And yet, as soon as I knelt down, the friar who was waiting for me in the confessional, perhaps sensing my discomfort, placed his hand on mine and didn’t let go for the whole time of the confession. That gesture helped me to feel closeness and understanding, and it encouraged me to open up. I felt as if the sins I was confessing lost their power over my heart, and in...