As far as I’ve heard, a priest cannot choose to not forgive sins. (He has to.)
But then I was thinking… When Jesus gives the apostles authority to forgive sins,
“Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them; and whose sins you shall retain, they are retained.”
-St. John 20:23
he says that they can also “retain” sins.
How does this go with Catholic teaching?
And also, if sins are retained, then can’t that leave a truly repentant man in a state of Mortal Sin, but unable to confess? (Because the sin has been retained)
Thanks and God Bless