Do you confess the sins that the Church views as wrong or do you confess what you think is wrong? I.e. contraceptives etc.
You are supposed to confess all mortal sins in kind and number, otherwise the absolution is invalid and your sins are not actually forgiven.
Personally, I confess all mortal sins in kind and number.
You must confess all moral sins that the Church teaches are grave. If you disagree with the Church, you must still confess it and then also Confess that you disagree with the Church.
After all, disagreeing with the Church on Faith and Morals is disagreeing with Christ and the Holy Spirit. As Christ promised He and the Holy Spirit would not allow the Church to error in teaching. So to disagree with the Church is to disagree with God.
I wouod do both nut if you had to pick then what the Church views as wrong because the church’s morality as a whole is greater than anyone persons
The Teaching of the grave nature of contraception is well - simply true. Just like murder and adultery -it is gravely wrong.
(Now if say a person was not a Catholic and say did not have a clue that contraception was wrong --and they later found out in becoming a Catholic the seriousness of such and thus ceased when they found out – they would note such in confession if such was mentioned.)
We are to form our conscience as Christians according to the Teachings of the Church.
As Paul says – there is to be a “renewal of our minds”. We hand ourselves over to the Obedience of Faith – we conform ourselves more and more to Christ. The Church Teaches with authority given by him…in him and thus in the Church is true life.
We must repent of all our mortal sins…and resolve to not commit mortal sins. We turn away from our such sins and towards Christ.
But if you disagree with the Church’s teaching on particular sins, then you are not acknowledging that it is a sin in your heart. How can one actually be repentant of a sin they feel isnt’ a sin!? Would seem to make the confession invalid if you aren’t truly repentant right!?
A very rich and helpful --very profound work from Pope Benedict XVI on what St. Paul said about renewal of the mind…
(starts second paragraph–read to end -though do not miss the first paragraph on another subject…).
I’m not a priest. But I would think that if you Confessed the way I’m suggesting, the priest would ask questions. Then, the priest would know how to help the person. The priest might not give absolution but could help them to learn the error of their ways.
Also, you can confess by saying something like “Father I am using (fill in the blank), but I do not believe it’s a sin.” Father will console you and provide feedback, but will most likely not grant absolution if you are remaining in a continuous state of sin (i.e. using contraceptives, trial marriage, married outside the Church, etc).
I hope I’m making sense.
well, not exactly …no offense. Why would one even go to confession and mention something they do not feel is a sin? The person would need to be contrite of heart over a sin they have committed. If they don’t believe its a sin, they won’t be contrite over it because they won’t believe they’ve committed a sin in the first place. If that’s not the case, then I’ve been instructed wrongly by Priest, Deacons, Catechist and folks here on CAF. If they are confused by a teaching of the Church that would be a discussion or counseling with the Priest outside of confession I would imagine.
I do agree though, if they confessed in that manner the Priest would very likely have questions.
I agree. You are correct. Truthfully, they really should not be in the Confessional to begin with if they disagree with Church teaching. But the OP asked “Do you confess the sins that the Church views as wrong or do you confess what you think is wrong?”
Suppose an unmarried Catholic is in the Confessional. He/she is sexually active. However, the Catholic disagrees with the Church (which is sinful) and feels that premarital sex is not a sin. What should be confessed? Should he/she withhold sin, which is sacrilegious? Or should he/she mention the premarital sex AND his/her disagreement with Church teaching to the Priest?
One should not withhold any sins from the Priest. A Priest will not grant absolution to someone who is in a perpetual state of grave sin. But they will provide guidance and feedback.
Again, if someone disagrees with Church teaching, they really should be making an appointment with a priest to discuss their situation. But IF they are already in the Confessional… they need tell the Priest.
I hope I’m making sense.
After reversion, my confessions were always what I thought was wrong. As I learned the faith, my understanding grew and I now confess what I know is wrong and what I think is wrong. I did have a sticking point but God in His mercy led me to full understanding so that I was able to repent. Had I gone to confession unrepentant than I could not have received absolution and would have remained separated from God.
If I had a problem now, I would study the subject from Catholic sources, seek spiritual guidance, pray and pray some more. I have learned that this is a world of using euphemisms and relativism in an attempt to make the vilest crimes and sins seem okay and normal.
Just from my personal perspective.
You confess what the Church teaches to be wrong. A sin does not cease to be a sin just because a person doesn’t think that it is wrong. Christ gave the Church the authority to interpret what is and what is not a sin, you have no authority to over-rule the Church on such matters. If the Church teaches that something is a sin then you must confess it.
The issue that I have is that it is kinda hard to recall all the number of times the sin was committed.
Because they know that the Church deems it to be a sin, and they know that, as a Catholic, we are bound to the teachings of our Church. A person might not feel it is a sin, but they will know that as the Church teaches it to be a sin they must try to subjugate their own feelings and accept what the Church teaches (even though this will seem extremely hard for them on that particular issue).
On the one hand a person might intellectually believe something is not a sin, and feel it is not a sin, but at the same time accept that the Church teaches that it is sinful and strive to subjugate his own view to the teaching of the Church.
Sin is not about what we feel is a sin, sin is what the Church teaches is sinful.
You could just tell the priest that you cannot recall the number of times you committed thhe sin, but that it was hundreds of time. Do the best you can. You cannot be expected to recall something that you have forgotten, just give an approximation to the best of your ability.
I see, that makes sense.
Just some of my thoughts…Concerning hundreds of times a sin has been committed–We should go to confession as soon as possible after a sin is committed, especially in the case of Mortal Sin. We must tell God we are sorry and resolve not to do this again. With God’s help, we can eventually overcome the sin. Sin can be addictive and our souls need regular cleansing and care. Persevere in prayer for the grace to end this sin… God showed Teresa of Avila a vision of the place reserved for her in hell unless she repented. At this time in her life, there was nothing to condemn her, but her love of God was diminishing. After this warning she grew rapidly in holiness. God expects us to make an honest effort to continue growing in his grace, and the sacrament of reconciliation is an important step along the spiritual path to reach heaven… Pray to the Holy Spirit to enlighten you on the sins you need to confess. On not being sure if what you have done is a sin, ask a priest. More likely than not, your conscience is going to be right. Read the Examination of Conscience before going to confession. Also, there are books on how to make a good confession. God bless.
I was told for minor or “little” sins you can just talk to God and say the Lord’s Prayer.