Best time and way to arrange a general confession?

Some books on confession commend to the penitent that it is good to perform a general confession of sins once a year, or at least every few years.

Lent, however, seems a poor time to undertake such a practice, given the long lines and other time cconstraints.

Indeed, the books which advise this tend to presuppose the penitent to have a "spiritual guide’ or a “confessor”, someone who regularly hears your confession and/or customarily advises one along one’s way. I don’t think most Catholics today experience such things only because of the want of available priests for such.

So, should one make an ‘appointment’ with a priest if one elects to do a general confession? Perform such at a time of year when confessions are not so busy?

Thanks for the thoughts.

If you don’t have one, you might find you still want to make an appointment with a particular priest. I know I sometimes prefer confession with a priest I recognize, whose homilies and/or demeanor I appreciate, with whom I feel a kind of affinity. :slight_smile:

I think that would be best, if possible. You and the priest may not feel so rushed under these circumstances, without other people waiting in line. :slight_smile:

I feel kind of silly asking, but what is a “general confession” how does this differ from the confession I normally attend.

I think a general confession has to do with a absolution of all sins in the past - like if someone has been away for multiple years and could not remember all the sins they committed so they say what they remember to their best of their ability along with a contrite heart and are absolved of all

at least this is how I understand it

A general confession is a review of all of ones sins in one’s lifetime. Part of the motivation is to confess sins which one may have overlooked in past confessions–but those forgotten/overlooked sins would have been absolved anyhoww, unless one deliberately ommited a sin out of embarrassment or whatever.

The greater purpose of the exercise is, I believe, to remind oneself of the fact that one is a sinner in constant need of grace, to keep before one’s eyes the degree to which one falls short of the optimal standard which God would have one to live by.

And, perhaps, to give oneself a renewed sense of God’s mercy and love, to realise more perfectly how marvelous is God’s love for us despite ourselves.

The (formerly) Father Corapi preached a sermon on this some years before he left the Priesthood and while I was discerning whether or not to return to the Church. He is perhaps the only modern priest I have come accross who commended the practice of doing a general confession regularly. His argument, as I recollect, was that while past generations of Catholics often suffered from a high degree of scrupulosity (the anxiety that one’s sins have not been forgiven owing to some perceived defect in their confessions), modern Catholics suffer more often from the opposite, and tend to treat sin and confession too lightly.

BTW-the mention of (formerly) Fr. Corapi is not an endorsement of any of his current activities: I am uncertain of the details of his departure from EWTN and from the priesthood, but believe he has been somewhat rebellious since that time.

Hope this helps. Thanks for the responses thus far!

Thanks that was a big help!!!

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