Confession, frequent Communion, Hesychasm, Holy Communion, Kollyvades, Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos, Nepsis, Scholasticism, spiritual direction, St. Makarios of Corinth, St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite
Would you like, O Christian, for the small errors you commit as a man, either with your eyes or with your ears, to be forgiven? Draw near to the Mysteries with fear and with a broken heart, and they will be remitted and forgiven. St. Anastasios of Antioch confirms this:
If we fall into some small, pardonable sins on account of our being human, either with our tongue, our ears, our eyes, and we fall as victims of deceit into vainglory, or sorrow, or anger, or some other like sin, let us condemn ourselves and confess to God. Thus let us partake of the Holy Mysteries, believing that the reception of the divine Mysteries is unto the purification of these small sins (though not the grave and evil and impure sins which we may have committed, regarding which we should seek the Mystery of Confession).
Many other Saints also attest to this. The divine Clement of Rome says: “Having partaken of the precious body and precious blood of Christ, let us give thanks to Him who has deemed us worthy to partake of His Holy Mysteries, and ask that these may not be unto our condemnation, but unto our salvation… unto the forgiveness of sins.”
St. Basil the Great says: “And make them worthy to partake without condemnation of these, Thine immaculate and life-giving Mysteries, unto the forgiveness of sins.” (Divine Liturgy of St. Basil the Great, Prayer after the Lord’s Prayer.)
The divine Chrysostom says: “That to those who shall partake thereof they may be unto vigilance of soul, and unto forgiveness of sins.” (Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, Prayer after the sanctification of the Gifts.)
All of these great and supranatural dignities and graces of which we have spoken until now are received by every Christian who partakes of the divine Mysteries of our sweetest Jesus Christ with a pure conscience; and indeed even more than these are received, which we have not mentioned for the sake of brevity.
After one receives Communion, he thinks about the dread and heavenly Mysteries of which he partook, and so he takes heed to himself so as not to dishonor that grace. He fears his thoughts [logismoi], shrinks away from them, and protects himself from them. He begins a more correct and virtuous life, and, as much as is possible, abstains from every evil. When he begins to think about the fact that he will be receiving Communion again in just a few days, he doubles his efforts to watch over himself. He adds zeal to zeal, self-control to self-control, vigilance to vigilance, labors upon labors, and he struggles as much as possible. This is because he is pressed on two sides: on one side, because just a short while ago he received Communion, and on the other, because he will receive again in just a short while.
— By St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite
Holy Communion & Confession
From a discussion with the students of the Moscow Theological Academy by the Metropolitan Hierotheos (Vlachos) of Nafpaktos and Saint Vlassios