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  #1  
Old Nov 22, '07, 7:51 pm
tomch tomch is offline
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Default Confession to God through Priest...

Just to prove that I'm not too proud to ask a dumb question... here goes! (yup... I'm a recent convert!)

When I'm confessing my sins to God in the presence of my Priest, am I talking to my Priest (who is speaking for God), or am I talking to God, (and my Priest is just listening)?

For example, should I say...
"God, I'm sorry for ____"

or...

"Father (as in Priest), I'm sorry for ____"

I usually use the word "Father," which covers both God and my Priest, but I was just wondering which way is "proper."

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old Nov 22, '07, 8:03 pm
benedictgal benedictgal is offline
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Default Re: Confession to God through Priest...

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomch View Post
Just to prove that I'm not too proud to ask a dumb question... here goes! (yup... I'm a recent convert!)

When I'm confessing my sins to God in the presence of my Priest, am I talking to my Priest (who is speaking for God), or am I talking to God, (and my Priest is just listening)?

For example, should I say...
"God, I'm sorry for ____"

or...

"Father (as in Priest), I'm sorry for ____"

I usually use the word "Father," which covers both God and my Priest, but I was just wondering which way is "proper."

Thanks!
When you go into the confessional (or wherever the Sacrement is to take place), the formula goes something like this:

Quote:
Bless me Father, for I have sinned....
The priest is there in persona Christi (forgive Latin misspelling). He acts in the name and person of Christ and the Church when administering this Sacrament. The prayer of absolution (and, if there are any priests out there, forgive me if I got the exact wording wrong) is, I believe, as follows:

Quote:
God, the Father of mercies, through the life, death and resurrection of His Son, has reconciled the world to himself and sent the Holy Spirit among us for the forgiveness of sins; through the ministry of the Church, may God grant you pardon and peace, and I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit
It is Jesus, Himself, who administers the Sacrament through the person and actions of the priest.

Now, just as an aside, I was a newly ordained priest's first penitent. He heard my confession in the parish cafeteria (empty). Just as he was ready to give me absolution, he blanked out on the prayer. I told him to repeat it after me and I was absolved. Don't ask me how I remembered the prayer. I guess it's because I go to cnofession a lot and my doctor tells me that I have a photographic memory. I guess I'm just weird.
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  #3  
Old Nov 22, '07, 11:28 pm
alessandro alessandro is offline
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Smile Jesus gave the power to the priests

Incidentally, the power of the priest to forgive sins (in persona Christi) was actually given by Jesus himself when He said,
Quote:
"And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose upon earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven" (Matthew 16:19).
You can read more about the sacrament of Penance (aka Reconciliation, aka Confession) at the Catholic Encyclopedia: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11618c.htm .

The Church of Our Saviour has a good guide for making a good confession: http://oursaviournyc.org/how-to-make-a-good-confession .
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  #4  
Old Nov 23, '07, 7:18 am
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JimR-OCDS JimR-OCDS is offline
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Default Re: Confession to God through Priest...

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomch View Post
Just to prove that I'm not too proud to ask a dumb question... here goes! (yup... I'm a recent convert!)

When I'm confessing my sins to God in the presence of my Priest, am I talking to my Priest (who is speaking for God), or am I talking to God, (and my Priest is just listening)?

For example, should I say...
"God, I'm sorry for ____"

or...

"Father (as in Priest), I'm sorry for ____"

I usually use the word "Father," which covers both God and my Priest, but I was just wondering which way is "proper."

Thanks!

Before the priest absolves you of your sins, he will ask you to say make and Act of Contrition. Here you say, "O My God, I am heartly sorry." You are asking God for forgiveness.

According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church

Quote:
1441 Only God forgives sins.
Futher;

Quote:
1446 Christ instituted the sacrament of Penance for all sinful members of his Church: above all for those who, since Baptism, have fallen into grave sin, and have thus lost their baptismal grace and wounded ecclesial communion. It is to them that the sacrament of Penance offers a new possibility to convert and to recover the grace of justification. the Fathers of the Church present this sacrament as "the second plank [of salvation] after the shipwreck which is the loss of grace."47
Quote:
1449 The formula of absolution used in the Latin Church expresses the essential elements of this sacrament: the Father of mercies is the source of all forgiveness. He effects the reconciliation of sinners through the Passover of his Son and the gift of his Spirit, through the prayer and ministry of the Church:

God, the Father of mercies,

through the death and the resurrection of his Son

has reconciled the world to himself

and sent the Holy Spirit among us

for the forgiveness of sins;

through the ministry of the Church

may God give you pardon and peace,

and I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.48
In confession God forgives our sins, but through the priest, we are reconciled with the Church and the punishment due to sin, is absolved.

Jim
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  #5  
Old Nov 23, '07, 1:32 pm
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PhilotheaZ PhilotheaZ is offline
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Default Re: Confession to God through Priest...

Quote:
Just to prove that I'm not too proud to ask a dumb question... here goes! (yup... I'm a recent convert!)

When I'm confessing my sins to God in the presence of my Priest, am I talking to my Priest (who is speaking for God), or am I talking to God, (and my Priest is just listening)?
Not a dumb question (or else I was dumb when I asked it!). A while back I asked a priest whether I am speaking to God the Father or to Father X the priest when I say "Bless me, Father, for I have sinned." He said I was speaking to the priest.

Yes, it God who forgives, but it is the priest who absolves ("unlocks" God's forgiveness). And the priest represents not only Christ, but also all the people in the Church, with whom we are also being reconciled.
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  #6  
Old Jan 31, '08, 3:52 am
Albmore Albmore is offline
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Default Re: Jesus gave the power to the priests

Quote:
Originally Posted by alessandro View Post
Incidentally, the power of the priest to forgive sins (in persona Christi) was actually given by Jesus himself when He said, You can read more about the sacrament of Penance (aka Reconciliation, aka Confession) at the Catholic Encyclopedia: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11618c.htm .

The Church of Our Saviour has a good guide for making a good confession: http://oursaviournyc.org/how-to-make-a-good-confession .
Using this verse to say that a priest can forgive sins is really strechting it and not taking the text in its context
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  #7  
Old Jan 31, '08, 4:57 am
SD Catholic SD Catholic is offline
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Default Re: Jesus gave the power to the priests

Quote:
Originally Posted by Albmore View Post
Using this verse to say that a priest can forgive sins is really strechting it and not taking the text in its context

Will this one work?... John 20:22-23... 22. And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. 23. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain or retained."
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  #8  
Old Jan 31, '08, 8:21 am
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Jean Anthony Jean Anthony is offline
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Default Re: Confession to God through Priest...

Please stay on topic, people. Take any apologetics questions/comments to the Apologetics forum. Thank you, everyone.
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  #9  
Old Jan 31, '08, 9:41 am
MH84 MH84 is offline
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Join Date: March 1, 2007
Posts: 1,725
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Default Re: Confession to God through Priest...

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilotheaZ View Post
Not a dumb question (or else I was dumb when I asked it!). A while back I asked a priest whether I am speaking to God the Father or to Father X the priest when I say "Bless me, Father, for I have sinned." He said I was speaking to the priest.
Yes, I have wondered about this too! I felt a bit strange saying the phrase and not really sure who it was supposed to be directed to. So it is to the priest?

I have to add:
You know how you were wondering about whether you were speaking to "God the Father or to Father X" why did you wonder if you were praying to God the Father? Why not God as in the Blessed Trinity, or God as in Jesus or the Holy Spirit? Aren't They our Father as well? It seems many people get the impression that God the Father is a level above the Son and the Holy Spirit, even if it is slightly. It bothers me because that would disturb the doctrine of the Trinity if that was true.

I could go on, about not on this thread anyway.
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  #10  
Old Feb 4, '08, 11:52 am
Albmore Albmore is offline
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Default Re: Jesus gave the power to the priests

Quote:
Originally Posted by SD Catholic View Post
Will this one work?... John 20:22-23... 22. And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. 23. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain or retained."
I know this verse but I still do not find the connection that this only refers to priest of the Catholic Church.

God Bless
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