in the fellowship of confession

“In confession the breakthrough to community takes place. Sin demands to have a man by himself. The more isolated a person is, the more destructive will be the power of sin over him, and the more deeply he becomes involved in it, the more disastrous is his isolation. Sin wants to remain unknown. It shuns the light. In the darkness of the unexpressed it poisons the whole being of a person. This can happen even in the midst of a pious community. In confession the light of the Gospel breaks into the darkness and seclusion of the heart. The sin must be brought into the light.

“… The sin concealed separated him from the fellowship, made all his apparent fellowship a sham; the sin confessed has helped him to find true fellowship with the brethren in Christ Jesus. … If a Christian is in the fellowship of confession with a brother he will never be alone again, anywhere.”

Life Together by Dietrich Bonhoeffer, (Harper & Row, 1954), pp.112-113.