Confession, RCIA, Baptism, Holy Orders

I am a baptized Christian who is participating in RCIA and looking forward to joining the Church this Easter. When I was 12 I was baptized but lived a very wicked life. I gave my life to Christ in 2005 and received a baptism rite through the Assemblies of God. Even though my life changed and I turned from my sins and began a life in Christ at that time, I understand and agree why the only valid baptism was the first one, because we acknowledge only one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. I agree with the CCC and have no trouble with this part. The thing is, many of the sins that I repented of and turned from in 2005 happened after my Baptism when I was 12 but before I truly gave my life over to Christ, which was marked by what is a symbolic recommittal baptism in 2005. I understand that we are to confess all sins after our Baptism. I have to go back to my only valid baptism, when I was 12, don’t I? I am without peace because I lived a very wicked life during that period, and yet I feel called to Holy Orders, but I fear that some of those sins will keep me from being considered for any higher service. Those I have hurt I have sought reconcilliation with and made amends, and I know that I have received forgiveness from them and from God.

I fear that, like King David, my sins will have ruined God’s plan A for me. If that is so, then I will rejoice in his plan B for me. I know that he knew before I was formed what my sins would be, and if I am called, he will make a way, and that I need to follow God, not the gift. I need some prayer because I am anxious about my confession, about my priest’s reaction, about whether or not he will turn away from allowing me greater participation in the sacraments and hopefully one day serving at the altar.

I was very wicked, and lived as if I could not fill my cup with enough abominations, I actively sought to defile my soul. I am not sure what to expect from my priest after this confession I will give, but I need prayer that I give an honest and courageous confession, and not allow my fear of what that will mean to my future in the Church to keep me from giving a good confession.

If my past sins do disqualify me for Holy Orders, I hope that I will be allowed the grace of a monastic life, where I could enjoy the support of a community of brothers who will stand by me when I share my testimony with others. I know that if I am humble and don’t hold on to my life, that many others who thought that they couldn’t turn to God would hear my story and realize that the Lord is merciful and will repent and turn their lives over to him.

I am full of anxiety and fear, and need your prayers, that I don’t substitute self-preservation or ambition for God’s Will and a holy confession.

Thank you.

I have been where you are.
Find a good confessor, that makes all the difference.
Ask people in your RCIA group for recommendations
Talk to a priest you like and trust,
share with him what you wrote here.
Most of all, believe that you are one of God’s beloved!
with peace and prayers:)

Don’t worry about what you “must” confess - confess all sin of which you are aware (even if there are things from before your FIRST baptism that still bother you. Embrace and celebrate the complete and unconditional forgiveness the Lord offers you!

Whether or not your journey will lead you to Holy Orders, vowed religious life, or some other vocation, the Lord will bring good out of what you bring to Him - even out of things that were evil. Who knows what He may have planned for you??

Do not have fear about Holy Orders, if you believe you are being called

Have you ever heard about Father Corapi?

his bio

Father John Corapi. S.O.L.T.
Father John Corapi is what has commonly been called a late vocation. In other words, he came to the priesthood other than a young man. He was 44 years old when he was ordained. His experiences prior to ordination have been termed simply astounding, but that is probably somewhat of an overstatement. They might be called extreme, however. From small town boy to the Vietnam era US Army, from successful businessman in Las Vegas and Hollywood to drug addicted and homeless, to religious life and ordination to the priesthood by Pope John Paul II, to a life as a preacher of the Gospel who has reached millions with the simple message that God’s Name is Mercy!

Welcome to the Church!

A few quick answers for you:

You are right about confessing everything back to the first and only real Baptism. Although God must surely have been very pleased with your recommitment, that was not a valid Baptism.

Whatever you tell in confession, your first or any subsequent one, is completely safe from consequences. The Seal of Confession prevents the priest from using ANY information from your confession against you afterward. He may not discuss it with others (vocation directors, for example), make any decisions about your participation in any formation or activity based on it, or even bring it up with you ever again without your express permission (and he may not ask for that - you must bring it up). If he were to do any of these things, he would be immediately excommunicated. On a practical level, priests really have heard everything and all those confessions they hear pretty much all run together, now matter how wicked you think your sins are. Your priest will admire your courage and be happy to free you of your sins and that’s about it. I can’t remember the source, but one writer very aptly referred to the confessional as a “graveyard for secrets.”

The time surrounding one’s entrance into the Church is a heady, emotional time. I happens very frequently that new Catholics perceive a call to priesthood or religious life during this time. The Church very wisely requires a waiting period before one may begin formal discernment for such a vocation - I believe it’s two years. During this time, it’s advisable to immerse yourself in being Catholic without actively pursuing a vocation. If God is calling you, He will make it clear to you when the time comes. He knows the rules - your call won’t get lost! :slight_smile: On a practical level, if you are to minister to the laity, you must know from experience what it is like to BE Catholic laity. Relax and enjoy being Catholic!


Thank you Betsy and everyone else for your wise and encouraging words. You have helped put much of my anxieties at ease.

God bless.

Good advice on the confession. Here is a good list to get OP started:

Don’t worry if you happen to forget something. Happens to us all, even those that go weekly!

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