Another confession question

Hello-

I joined the Church last year at Easter, and I’ve been to confession 5 times. My question is a bit hard to nail down, but here it is.

The first two confessions, I had mortal sins to confess, and I found it very helpful, even though I was scared to go. The last three times I’ve been, I did not have mortal sins to confess, just things I want to improve on, and some smaller sins. In each instance, I felt as though the priest was trying to tell me that I was doing ok and didn’t really need to worry so much about what was a sin. I don’t want to obsess with fear over falling into sin, and I am cautious and careful with my life so as not to veer into mortal sin, but I also don’t want to not go to confession. So, I guess my question is should I go even though I really don’t feel I have anything to confess? I don’t want to use it as individual therapy time.

And finally, would you say that impatience and anger in parenting are mortal sins? It’s an area I struggle in, but I’m unsure if there’s a confession there…

Thanks for your help!
Angela

Hello-

I joined the Church last year at Easter, and I’ve been to confession 5 times. My question is a bit hard to nail down, but here it is.

The first two confessions, I had mortal sins to confess, and I found it very helpful, even though I was scared to go. The last three times I’ve been, I did not have mortal sins to confess, just things I want to improve on, and some smaller sins. In each instance, I felt as though the priest was trying to tell me that I was doing ok and didn’t really need to worry so much about what was a sin. I don’t want to obsess with fear over falling into sin, and I am cautious and careful with my life so as not to veer into mortal sin, but I also don’t want to not go to confession. So, I guess my question is should I go even though I really don’t feel I have anything to confess? I don’t want to use it as individual therapy time.

And finally, would you say that impatience and anger in parenting are mortal sins? It’s an area I struggle in, but I’m unsure if there’s a confession there…

Thanks for your help!
Angela

The answer to your Final Question IS DEFINATELY NO!

Frequent confession is a sigh of a close relationship with God and improving holiness.

Many Saints went daily; including some Popes. So go as often as possible and TRY to go to the same priest who will come to know the state of your Spiritual Life and be able to give you guidence.

Thnak God Daily for NO Mortal SINS:thumbsup: That too is a GREAT sign of growing holiness.

I usually beagan my Confessions in the normal matter and then say: 'Thanks to the Grace of God I have no Mortal sins to Confess. But I am having problems with…

Your Doing GOOD!

Keep going and keep praying; you earn GRACE every time you humble yourself in Confession!

God Bless,
Pat

Yes…come frequently to confession (but do not wait til then to seek forgiveness of your venial sins…which can be forgiven in many ways…contrition etc)

Perhaps decide how often you would like to go with at least some of your venial sins…

once a week, every other week, once a month…etc

Catechism:

1458 Without being strictly necessary, confession of everyday faults (venial sins) is nevertheless strongly recommended by the Church.59 Indeed the regular confession of our venial sins helps us form our conscience, fight against evil tendencies, let ourselves be healed by Christ and progress in the life of the Spirit. By receiving more frequently through this sacrament the gift of the Father’s mercy, we are spurred to be merciful as he is merciful…

IX. The Effects of This Sacrament

1468 "The whole power of the sacrament of Penance consists in restoring us to God’s grace and joining us with him in an intimate friendship."73 Reconciliation with God is thus the purpose and effect of this sacrament. For those who receive the sacrament of Penance with contrite heart and religious disposition, reconciliation "is usually followed by peace and serenity of conscience with strong spiritual consolation."74 Indeed the sacrament of Reconciliation with God brings about a true “spiritual resurrection,” restoration of the dignity and blessings of the life of the children of God, of which the most precious is friendship with God.75

1469 This sacrament reconciles us with the Church. Sin damages or even breaks fraternal communion. the sacrament of Penance repairs or restores it. In this sense it does not simply heal the one restored to ecclesial communion, but has also a revitalizing effect on the life of the Church which suffered from the sin of one of her members.76 Re-established or strengthened in the communion of saints, the sinner is made stronger by the exchange of spiritual goods among all the living members of the Body of Christ, whether still on pilgrimage or already in the heavenly homeland:77

It must be recalled that . . . this reconciliation with God leads, as it were, to other reconciliations, which repair the other breaches caused by sin. the forgiven penitent is reconciled with himself in his inmost being, where he regains his innermost truth. He is reconciled with his brethren whom he has in some way offended and wounded. He is reconciled with the Church. He is reconciled with all creation.78

1470 In this sacrament, the sinner, placing himself before the merciful judgment of God, anticipates in a certain way the judgment to which he will be subjected at the end of his earthly life. For it is now, in this life, that we are offered the choice between life and death, and it is only by the road of conversion that we can enter the Kingdom, from which one is excluded by grave sin.79 In converting to Christ through penance and faith, the sinner passes from death to life and "does not come into judgment."80

Hi Angela,

I thought the other posters gave good answers to your question, but I wanted to give you some encouragement, since I’m a mom too (four kids born and one on the way!) and I struggle with some scrupulosity regarding parenting.:hug1:

Don’t worry so much about it. It would be possible to commit mortal sins due to anger, of course, but it would have to be something objective- deliberately cruel words or actions; child abuse of some sort. Believe me, I yell or show significant irritation ten times a day, and that’s if things are going well! Just work on keeping your words kind and unhurtful, even if your tone is cranky because you are human and kids can be really tough to cope with.

God Bless
Joan

Hi Angela,
I misread your post on my first try, so I thought you had been to confession every 3 days since this past Easter! Anyways, 5 confessions over the course of a year is not excessive. Keep praying and living the Catholic life! God bless you

Anger in our family keeps a bunch of us out of the Communion line at times. :blush:
I suggest finding a different confessor.
If Pope Benedict goes every week, we should as well. (Not that I do, I get the same flack from the priests)
Hearing Confessions is about the most intimate thing a priest does besides consecrating the Eucharist. I think priests should never tell someone not to worry about sin.
Hearing confessions is a part of the job description.
In my county, (half a million people, I think), we have about 90 mins a week available for confession. I think the priests are overworked. But the Cure of Ars, St. John Vianney listened to confessions for 18 hrs a day. Revival happened.

=Bookcat;7860873]Yes…come frequently to confession (but do not wait til then to seek forgiveness of your venial sins…which can be forgiven in many ways…contrition etc)

Perhaps decide how often you would like to go with at least some of your venial sins…

once a week, every other week, once a month…etc

Catechism:

1458 Without being strictly necessary, confession of everyday faults (venial sins) is nevertheless strongly recommended by the Church.59 Indeed the regular confession of our venial sins helps us form our conscience, fight against evil tendencies, let ourselves be healed by Christ and progress in the life of the Spirit. By receiving more frequently through this sacrament the gift of the Father’s mercy, we are spurred to be merciful as he is merciful…

IX. The Effects of This Sacrament

1468 "The whole power of the sacrament of Penance consists in restoring us to God’s grace and joining us with him in an intimate friendship."73 Reconciliation with God is thus the purpose and effect of this sacrament. For those who receive the sacrament of Penance with contrite heart and religious disposition, reconciliation "is usually followed by peace and serenity of conscience with strong spiritual consolation."74 Indeed the sacrament of Reconciliation with God brings about a true “spiritual resurrection,” restoration of the dignity and blessings of the life of the children of God, of which the most precious is friendship with God.75

1469 This sacrament reconciles us with the Church. Sin damages or even breaks fraternal communion. the sacrament of Penance repairs or restores it. In this sense it does not simply heal the one restored to ecclesial communion, but has also a revitalizing effect on the life of the Church which suffered from the sin of one of her members.76 Re-established or strengthened in the communion of saints, the sinner is made stronger by the exchange of spiritual goods among all the living members of the Body of Christ, whether still on pilgrimage or already in the heavenly homeland:77

It must be recalled that . . . this reconciliation with God leads, as it were, to other reconciliations, which repair the other breaches caused by sin. the forgiven penitent is reconciled with himself in his inmost being, where he regains his innermost truth. He is reconciled with his brethren whom he has in some way offended and wounded. He is reconciled with the Church. He is reconciled with all creation.78

1470 In this sacrament, the sinner, placing himself before the merciful judgment of God, anticipates in a certain way the judgment to which he will be subjected at the end of his earthly life. For it is now, in this life, that we are offered the choice between life and death, and it is only by the road of conversion that we can enter the Kingdom, from which one is excluded by grave sin.79 In converting to Christ through penance and faith, the sinner passes from death to life and "does not come into judgment."80

WELL DONE!

Thanks,

Pat

What the others have posted is great, but I want to mention something a bit different and hinted at in your post: Scrupulosity. It is a problem that can develop through an unhealthy obsession with sin that leads one to believe perfectly normal things are sinful. If your quote above indicates that such is what the priest seems to be getting at, work with him. Scrupulosity can be insidious and is ultimately destructive.

Remember, all have sinned and fallen short. Christ loves us in our sinfulness. Don’t despair, one thief was saved. Don’t presume, one thief was condemned. Keep a healthy balance in your life loving God and your fellow man - trusting in God’s love.

Pax te cum.

As others have said, you should be careful about becoming scrupulous. Though it is certainly important to try and avoid sin, we must not become so obsessed with sin that it takes up our whole lives. Rather our focus should be on God and then we will naturally avoid sinning.

As for the priest, he may have been a little tired when you went to confession that day or something like that. Priests are people too and sometimes they have bad or “off” days. However, if this turns out to be a regular issue you face during confession then you could always consider going to another parish for confession (no one is required to go to their parish priest for confession). However, if you are fortunate enough to not have any grave sins to confess for so long then I think you should rejoice and thank God, remembering that it is His grace that is keeping you on the right path. Many of us on CAF could not make such a boast when it comes to our trips to the confessional. :o

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