Confession: I forgot if I heard words of absolution/got absolved


I just went to confession today and felt relieved after (ostensibly) receiving absolution. For the whole day I was pretty happy, but when I went to Mass and before communion, I suddenly realized that I don’t remember hearing the words of absolution/being absolved.

I’ve been trying to recall and recreate in my mind the last moments of that confession so I could be sure that I received absolution. I (sort of) recall making the sight of the cross. And the priest said “Go in peace” and I thanked him afterwards. But before that, my memory is a bit fuzzy. It could be because the sound quality in the confessional didn’t make it totally audible for me. It could also be because I was distracted during the actual giving of absolution because I was thinking about what the priest just said, and I was having a lot of emotions about that particular confession. It could be because I was stressed because I had to attend a difficult class afterwards. Bottomline is that I couldn’t remember if I received absolution or if the priest said the words of absolution because, perhaps, I didn’t listen as intently as I should have. But as far as I recall, everything was right about the confession. It’s just that at that point (of all times!) that my memory right now is fuzzy.

I’m not saying that the priest DIDN’T absolve me or said the words of absolution. What I’m saying is that I DON’T REMEMBER if he did. Should I go to confession again, or am I just being scrupulous? Thanks!

Get help for your scrupulosity, it will literally drive you crazy if you don’t.

Should I go to confession again, or am I just being scrupulous? Thanks!

You went to confession. If you honestly stated all the mortal sins you could remember and were truly sorry for your sins, you were absolved. Don’t make it more complicated than it is. God is not trying to trick you. Trust in His mercy and forgiveness.

God Bless

And especially given the fact that even today, some priests, both older and younger, say the absolution in the traditional way, by reciting the words in silently or in a low voice while the act of contrition is being said, so that by the time the act is complete, so is the absolution.

I had confessions like these several times before when I say the act of contrition and I can see the priest make the sign of the Cross without hearing him say a word. But since I know of this manner of absolution, I simply assume (most likely correctly) that this elderly priest had already absolved me while I was saying the Act of Contrition, so I left in peace with no further thought of it.

Nobody should be racking his brains over the “quality” of the priest’s absolution.

That’s just the devil and his envy.

Demons act in accordance with principles, just like God does. The primary principle of demons is “anything but God”.

Satan is using your scrupulosity against you to bring your attention away from God and towards something else. Please, go find counseling and get help to rid yourself of the scourge of scrupulosity.

Imagine that discussion on Judgment Day…

I had this happen to me once. I often get very anxious and that causes your mind to forget things. If it keeps bothering you, just mention it again next time in confession but you went… you sort forgiveness so I believe you are forgiven!

That you don’t remember does not affect the sacrament’s efficacy. You would be just as absolved whether you are conscious or unconscious at the moment the priest absolves.

You should certainly not go to confession again…you have already received the sacrament.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit