I am wondering about confession. I have recently started thinking about a lot of my sins when I was outside the church for a while. I confessed a lot of sins my first time back in the confessional but after much thought there are many that I missed. I talked to the priest at my church and he said not to worry God wiped the slate clean. My question is should I try and write them all down and confess them anyway or is it better to just move on. I also know that I know better have thought even more things I would not have even thought of as sins because I was ignorant. I want to be clean and I don’t want to dwell yet I am bothered and overwhelmed by my own guilt of unfaithfullness. I appreciate your answers.
If you think it will be helpful to you to mention them - go right ahead. If it’s gonna be a really long list then make an appointment with the priest beforehand, and tell him you’re making a ‘general confession’ covering a lot of your past life, so that he knows it may take a while!
Personally I’d only do so if there was a genuine risk of me returning to my old sins in the future.
Personally, I would not rehash the past. Leave it to ther mercy of God.
Writing them down when your examing your conscience is a good idea. Just make sure you don’t lose and distroy the paper when your done
As far as forgetting them in confession. If they were venial you are not obligated to go to confession again. They were forgiven and your fine That being said if something is really bugging my conscience I would tell the priest about it. For mortal sins I was aways taught if you forget them in confession you do need to go back and confess them.
Your priest wanted to diminish scrupolosity in you - you forgot about sins after all, you did not omit them intentionally from your first confession.
I would make a short retreat to have the time and leisure for a good self-examination. Spiritual direction could help you a lot here! Write down what you can remember and confess them the next time you go to confession. But don’t obsess to much over things you have forgotten to mention - just make a note of whatever you forgot and make sure you confess them the next time. Since you recently returned to the Church, I think it would be wise to find a confessor you are comfortable with and stick to him!
What if you forget to mention a mortal sin, and forget it the next confession, and so on and never confess it?
I learned that God’s grace is enough. If we honestly forget, then it is forgiven, but if we recall it later, it’s best to confess it. It’s when we intentionally hold back that we are in danger.
I’ll pray for you and your conversion, as well as your peace of mind.
From the Catechism:
The answer to your question.
*1493 *One who desires to obtain reconciliation with God and with the Church, must confess to a priest all the unconfessed grave sins he remembers after having carefully examined his conscience. The confession of venial faults, without being necessary in itself, is nevertheless strongly recommended by the Church.
Some more tidbits…
Why it is necessary.
1456 Confession to a priest is an essential part of the sacrament of Penance: “All mortal sins of which penitents after a diligent self-examination are conscious must be recounted by them in confession, even if they are most secret and have been committed against the last two precepts of the Decalogue; for these sins sometimes wound the soul more grievously and are more dangerous than those which are committed openly.”
Next is the mentioning of venial sins.
*1458 *Without being strictly necessary, confession of everyday faults (venial sins) is nevertheless strongly recommended by the Church. Indeed the regular confession of our venial sins helps us form our conscience, fight against evil tendencies, let ourselves be healed by Christ and progress in the life of the Spirit. By receiving more frequently through this sacrament the gift of the Father’s mercy, we are spurred to be merciful as he is merciful
What happens after absolution.
1496 The spiritual effects of the sacrament of Penance are:
- reconciliation with God by which the penitent recovers grace;
- reconciliation with the Church;
- remission of the eternal punishment incurred by mortal sins;
- remission, at least in part, of temporal punishments resulting from sin;
- peace and serenity of conscience, and spiritual consolation;
- an increase of spiritual strength for the Christian battle.
(taken from St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church Website)
When the priest pronounces Absolution over you, He not only absolves you of all of the sins you remembered to confess, but also those you inadvertently forget. God knows that our memory, like the rest of us, isn’t perfect, and that, even with a full examination of conscience, we’re likely to forget some sins or have them slip our mind.
Take the advice of the brothers and sisters here - Write down the sins you’re pretty sure you forgot, tell them to the priest in your next confession, and then, please leave them there.
God’s mercy and Grace really are more than enough to forgive whatever sins you, or I, may have committed. and, Please, be assured that the Absolution that was pronounced covers even the sins you inadvertendly forgot, and that you’re only doing this so that you can leave them behind.
Your Brother in Christ, Michael
the priest is the person with the authority to hear your sins and absolve them. he is the one to give you spiritual direction on this matter. he has given you an answer. he has explained the effects of the sacrament of confession. I am glad you appreciate our answers. I hope you appreciate the priest’s answer. Please be guided by him in these matters, not by us. God bless you. In general we discuss the sacraments on the liturgy and sacraments forum, and this forum is for those who are asking for prayers for a specific intention.
You have gooten some really good advice here. Do what makes you the most comfortable. I really enjoy my confessor. He stops the bull crud in its tracks, and gets me on the right road every time. Don’t get uncomfortable, just keep on going:thumbsup: