Confession before being received into the Church


#1

Friends, as I have written in the “Religion” field of my profile, I am hoping to be Catholic by the end of the year.

I have just come back from the meeting with the local priest, and we’re good to go :slight_smile: All I need now is to officially leave the Lutheran church in Germany and bring my Baptism certificate so he can request permission from the Archdiocese to receive me into Holy Church.

Father said that I would receive the Sacrament of Confirmation, recite the Creed and affirm belief in and acceptance of all Catholic teaching and then receive First Communion (which is odd to write at my age! :stuck_out_tongue: ). I asked Father about Confession, ore specifically that I supposed I would have to go to my first Confession before receiving the Eucharist. He said that is not necessary, but I could if I wanted. I find that rather awkward, since I was fairly sure that Confession was necessary before becoming Catholic and receiving Communion.

In any event, I will ask Father for Confession before I receive Communion, because – God knows – there’s a lot of mortal sin on my soul.

Is it necessary to go to Confession before being received into the Church?


#2

Confession should certainly be done so that you receive your Sacraments (Confirmation and Eucharist) in a state of grace. Catholics should receive any and all Sacraments in a state of grace. Confess before marriage. Confess before ordination. Et cetera. Having mortal sins on your soul will not invalidate your Confirmation but you won’t receive the grace of Confirmation until you confess your mortal sins. :slight_smile:


#3

I will, as hard as I can see it being now already. So does that imply it is not necessary by Canon Law?


#4

I do not know what Canon Law says. I am sure that someone can post the relevant canons here. If the priest will allow you to confess, you should. If he won’t, perhaps another priest could hear your confession?


#5

He will allow me. He said “If you want to, of course, you can confess, but you don’t have to.” I’d be glad if some others could shed some light on Canon Law. :slight_smile:


#6

You don't need to in the sense that it's essential for your acceptance into the Church. After all, confession has no sacramental validity if you have nothing to confess!

That said, it is to my mind extremely unlikely that you don't have even a single venial or mortal sin that you'd like to unburden yourself of. So I would say he's right in a very narrow technical sense but that you should probably go to confession, anyway.


#7

Here's the text from the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults as adapted for the US. You would need to verify that it says the same thing in other areas:

  1. If the profession of faith and reception take place within Mass, the candidate, according to his or her own conscience, should make a confession of sins beforehand, first informing the confessor that he or she is about to be received into full communion. Any confessor who is lawfully approved may hear the candidate's confession.

#8

As others have stated, you will indeed need to go to confession. If you were being baptized as part of your reception into the Church, then you would not. Are you sure that Father realizes that you are already baptized? Also, you mentioned officially leaving the Lutheran Church, but above your member name it says that you are Anglican. I am not sure that I follow. :confused:


#9

But…Jesus calls us to “repent and be baptized”. so even if one is to be baptized, a good examination of conscience, and coming before God in prayer with a contrite heart and humble spirit is essential, even though not part of the rite.

Too often, we send people into baptism like its a free pass for past transgressions.

Repentance is essential.


#10

[quote="sw85, post:6, topic:339539"]
You don't need to in the sense that it's essential for your acceptance into the Church. After all, confession has no sacramental validity if you have nothing to confess!

That said, it is to my mind extremely unlikely that you don't have even a single venial or mortal sin that you'd like to unburden yourself of. So I would say he's right in a very narrow technical sense but that you should probably go to confession, anyway.

[/quote]

There's a lot to get rid off, I can assure you. :)

[quote="Chatter163, post:8, topic:339539"]
As others have stated, you will indeed need to go to confession. If you were being baptized as part of your reception into the Church, then you would not. Are you sure that Father realizes that you are already baptized? Also, you mentioned officially leaving the Lutheran Church, but above your member name it says that you are Anglican. I am not sure that I follow. :confused:

[/quote]

Let me clear things up for you. :)

Father knows I'm baptised, since he asked and I told him.

As for the Lutheran church vs. Anglican: Germany has this Church tax thing, which means you are registered with the state when you enter a Christian Church (Theoretically this applies to non-Christians too, but isn't enacted). The Church I am registered with gets my Church tax, up until now the Lutherans. I was registered with the Lutheran church on my Baptism.

It says Anglican in my description because I was confirmed there and never really had anything to do with the Lutherans apart from my Baptism. I never changed affiliation with the state since up until now I never had to pay the Church tax, since that only kicks in if you have a full-time job.

Officially I am Lutheran and thus need to leave that state, even though I never really had anything to do with them apart from the registration and Baptism.

Hope that helps. :)


#11

Whether or not the priest insists on it or not, why not go to confession before receiving communion? That way, you’ll also get this off your soul and get practice in!


#12

Are you going through RCIA?

I was a baptised Methodist. I went through RCIA then at Easter (1992) I had my first Confession on Saturday (day before Easter Sunday), was formally accepted into the Church on Easter Sunday and had my first Communion, then 6 months later had my Confirmation. In some countries Confirmation is also done at Easter.


#13

The priest says I don’t have to go through RCIA. He’s confident I’m familiar enough with Catholic teaching based on what I told him about my wish to convert and plans for the future.

From what I understood, I will receive Confirmation and First Communion the same day. The date isn’t set yet.


#14

As a person who is already baptized he’s right that you don’t have to go through RCIA.

Baptized Christians who seek full communion with the Catholic Church are not to have difficulties imposed on them. They are to be brought in when ready and that varies from person to person – some who are well-cathechized requiring no more than a few weeks of preparation, others requiring a lot more time. There is no set time for reception into full communion, unlike Baptism which the Church says should be at Easter.


#15

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