From the Vatican came a new directive on Thursday that many hope will bolster the faith of Roman Catholics worldwide. Though the number of Catholics around the world stands at over one billion, there has been a growing concern over the lack of "firm commitment to the faith." Many Catholics attend mass infrequently, and even fewer regularly attend confession. So in an effort to increase interest in the faith the Roman Catholic Church will begin experimenting with Pre-Confession cards in a number of parishes around the world.
"The concept is a very simple one." Said Fr. Giralamo Francisco, a Vatican spokesperson. "Parishioners may now confess their sins in advance and avoid the problems of trying to make it to confession."
In about 2 minutes, and for a "small fee" a parishioner can simply go online and fill out a short questionnaire stating which sins he or she wishes to confess in advance. Once pre-confessed, he or she is given penance to do and, after a "small fee" is paid, the parishioner will be able to download and print out his or her pre-confession card. The parishioner then keeps the card and simply punches out or scratches out one of the spaces when a sin is committed.
"Cards will be available in amounts of 5, 10, 20, & 25." Said Francisco. "There will be a 'small fee' for the cards, but the higher amount that one buys the lower cost it will be per confessed sin."
If the idea is received well the Vatican hopes to explore more opportunities for "simplifying the faith."
"We've also toyed with the idea of shipping holy water directly to people's front door, and even Eucharist delivery for a 'small fee' of course." Said Francisco. "We believe that the practice of the faith should not be a hindrance to one's faith."