Confession after long period of time?


How can someone go for a long time, and then remember all their mortal sins? Like a year, or many years? Do you just try your best to remember them all? I guess that’s the worst with me, I can almost get scrupulous about confession…I also get confused about confessing number and kind. I’ve tried to look that up before and figure out what it means, but I still don’t know. Could someone help me out with the subject, maybe give me some references I could look at, like a good site or book? I read Scott Hahns Lord Have Mercy…but it didn’t deal much at all about how to confess. I wasn’t raised Catholic, and confession has been pretty hard for me. (sorry I’m rambling). So I’m trying to understand it better, all the different aspects. Thanks for any help.


As long as you try your best to remember all of your sins, you are absolved of the sins you didn’t remember. If you remember something you didn’t confess, just confess it the next time.


When I evangelize to fallen-away Catholics in my law practice, I tell them to go to a priest and in a “general confession” make sure to hide none of the embarrassing sins – “the ones which want to make you hide under the pew – those are the mortal sins.”


This happened to me after a long absence years ago (I am happy I am back by the way :D)

What I did was read several articles on the Internet about how to make a good confession. I prayed. I reflected on my life since my last confession. I know the Holy Spirit guided me ono how to organize my thoughts and what to say, and it ended up being such a rewarding experience. Sincerity is a key part of the process, but don’t worry if after the fact you remember something, even if it’s big. When the Priest absolves your sins, they are ALL absolved.

Good luck and God bless - I’ll pray for you!


“Number and kind,” especially for a confession after many months or years, doesn’t mean that you must come up with an absolute definite number for every sin of every kind. Suppose one were involved in fornication, for example, which continued for a long time. You could state it in confession as “commited the sin of fornication about three times a week for the past 14 years,” or something of that nature. The priest is less concerned with an exact number than he is with getting a reasonably accurate picture of what happened.

When you try too hard to be super exact, you run the risk of scrupulosity; and that’s not a good thing: it means you don’t really trust in God’s forgiveness.


Thanks for the responses. :slight_smile:


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