Could I bring a list into confession?


#1

I’ve commited MANY sins in the past; in fact, probably so many that it’s impossible for me to remember them all. What about sins you forgot about? Can these be forvigen if you just ask the Lord, “Please forgive me for the sins I’ve forgot about.” Also, since I probably can’t memorize all the sins I could recall, is it acceptable for me to bring a list (written or typed) into confession to make sure I’ve said all of them?
Also, how specific should you be when confessing a sin? Do you have to give a specific time, place and purpose, or just very briefly say what you did without any explanation or setting?


#2

When you go to confession you are forgiven of all your sins, even the ones you forget. The only way you are not forgiven is if you purposely do not say some sins or if you intend to keep doing it and are not sorry. If you forget a sin all you have to do is confess it the next time you go to confession.

You do not have to go through all the details of your sins. You just need to tell enough so that the preist knows what the sin is. Tell how many time you committed the sin. And do not hide anything.

I do not know about the list. Maybe someone else could help.


#3

I have recently spoken to a priest in a very traditional RC church that has confession before every daily and sunday mass about the fact that I felt I have not made proper confession in a long time. This priest sugested to me that I bring a written guide with me and baiscly “Clear the slate”. I have written one and am going to try to go today.


#4

I brought a list with me once to confession, I thought Father was going to fall off his chair. :stuck_out_tongue:

He looked at me, smiled, and made the statement that I surely was prepared. :thumbsup:

I feel better organized when I bring a list, (praying never to have that many sins to ever has to confess), but also, I have a tendecy to forget sins that need confessing until sometime later. And yes, I know that those sins are forgiven also, but I still feel guilty by forgetting them.


#5

You could, but don’t worry about every single bad thing you did in your life. Confess your mortal sins, venial sins are forgiven during the confetitior at mass. I sometimes have trouble with being scrupulous too.


#6

After bringing a list to confession and making sure you confess every sin you could possibly remember, afterwards you must have a feeling of pureness, being clean and having a fresh new start to be holy. I’m planning this out, and want to type out a paper full of the sins I’ve committed.
Also on the side; in confession do you face the priest or sit behind the wooden furniture that mostly blocks the two of you?


#7

Usually I do it behind the screen. It’s more because I am very close to the priests at my parish. I know they know it’s me on the other side of the screen. But when I’m behind the screen and I’m not looking at them, it helps me remember that I’m not speaking to them, but to Christ. Although face to face confession is the more ancient way.


#8

I think I’ll do my “typed list” confession behind the screen, but other times I’ll confess face to face.


#9

[quote=Psalm45:9]Usually I do it behind the screen. It’s more because I am very close to the priests at my parish. I know they know it’s me on the other side of the screen. But when I’m behind the screen and I’m not looking at them, it helps me remember that I’m not speaking to them, but to Christ. Although face to face confession is the more ancient way.
[/quote]

This reminds of the time I was going to confession at my parish. I asked a man coming out of the confessional which priest was hearing confessions (we had three at the time). His reply: “The unmarried one!” :stuck_out_tongue: He then said something to the effect that it didn’t matter which priest it was as we were telling our sins directly to Christ. A wise man…:hmmm:


#10

[quote=RNRobert]This reminds of the time I was going to confession at my parish. I asked a man coming out of the confessional which priest was hearing confessions (we had three at the time). His reply: “The unmarried one!” :stuck_out_tongue: He then said something to the effect that it didn’t matter which priest it was as we were telling our sins directly to Christ. A wise man…:hmmm:
[/quote]

:smiley: That guy is pretty wise.


#11

[quote=PMV]I’ve commited MANY sins in the past; in fact, probably so many that it’s impossible for me to remember them all. What about sins you forgot about? Can these be forvigen if you just ask the Lord, “Please forgive me for the sins I’ve forgot about.” Also, since I probably can’t memorize all the sins I could recall, is it acceptable for me to bring a list (written or typed) into confession to make sure I’ve said all of them?
Also, how specific should you be when confessing a sin? Do you have to give a specific time, place and purpose, or just very briefly say what you did without any explanation or setting?
[/quote]

If you take a list, make sure you don’t leave it in the confessional :slight_smile:


#12

When I went to my 1st confession before being confirmed into the RCC, I told the priest that I was 55 years old and that he would probably need a couple days, at least! for my confession. I was so stressed. He laughed and said, “just hit the high notes”. He put me at ease immediately and the list I had made just went into my pocket. Though I did only hit the “high notes”, I was still in there for a half hour. :o


#13

[quote=RNRobert]This reminds of the time I was going to confession at my parish. I asked a man coming out of the confessional which priest was hearing confessions (we had three at the time). His reply: “The unmarried one!” :stuck_out_tongue: He then said something to the effect that it didn’t matter which priest it was as we were telling our sins directly to Christ. A wise man…:hmmm:
[/quote]

When I made my first confession after 33 years away from the Church, I was so sorrowful and ashamed that I asked my priest, rather rhetorically, “can you really forgive me for all these things?”
“No, I cannot.” he answered. I was shocked, as that wasn’t the answer I expected.
He continued humbly, "Only Christ can forgive sins. I only speak, however poorly, in His name."
I learned a lot in that confessional.
Grace to you,
Paul


#14

[quote=catsrus]When I went to my 1st confession before being confirmed into the RCC, I told the priest that I was 55 years old and that he would probably need a couple days, at least! for my confession. I was so stressed. He laughed and said, “just hit the high notes”. He put me at ease immediately and the list I had made just went into my pocket. Though I did only hit the “high notes”, I was still in there for a half hour. :o
[/quote]

For a first confession, a life confession, I am dogmatic about the list. Know the person who will receive your confession. Some priests think lists are “scrupulous.” A list is only scrupulous if YOU are scrupulous.

Some people find it useful to do their examen over a period of many weeks – a month or more in half-hour stints. Pray over that list. It is NOT scrupulous to want this confession to be a watershed event in your life.

As an Episcopalian, before coming into the Church, I had for many years made sacramental confessions, but I wanted this one to be “flawless.” By that I did not mean that I thought I could remember everything I ever did that needed to be confessed, but only that I should approach it with deep honesty, unsparingly reserving nothing, excusing nothing. I prayed about it for 6 months – although I did not begin my examen and writing until 2 days before the event. The two hours I spent in that room were the most important two hours of my life.

Peace be with you as you approach this holy encounter with the mercy of Christ.


#15

There is nothing wrong with a list as long as you are not scrupulous about it (everything being a sin…like emotions when not acted upon). If it has been a while since going to confession (like a couple of months) I tend to writen then on a small piece of paper that would not draw any attention. Being a cradle Catholic, I have matured spiritually in my understanding of sinfulness. Having been in an exorcism for five years, I have made a general confession prior to the event (?). Now, that list was surely long. My guide was the Catechism of the Catholic church. The sins were only mentioned with the amount of times. That’s it (other than repentance, of course).

Only once, a couple of Christmasses ago, I had my little list going (as I do have some-timers:D ) a priest laughed his head off. And this, in front of the whole congregation! :eek: (We do not have general absolution here in our diocese). Talk about being mortified. He pointed to me that Jesus was a Jesus of love. Well, duh, I knew that. Just another liberal priest (charismatic to boot…) Anyway, it was a lesson in humility. God bless him…

A list should not be a problem as long as you are confessing real sins…

Blessings,
Shoshana


#16

What does “scrupulous” mean?


#17

[quote=DVIN CKS]What does “scrupulous” mean?
[/quote]

Scrupulousity is a spiritual/psychological condition which makes a person so overly preoccupied with every little possibly sinful thing that he is unable maintain perspective or to accept forgiveness. I’m no expert on this but elswhere on these forums people who suffer from scrupulosity have said that it is related to obsessive compulsive disorder.


#18

I’ve taken a list into confession, though it is a rare thing. A few priests I know never seemed happy about having a list being read from.

Here’s an interesting confession story. When I worked for another company years ago, I was on the road a bit. There was a church I knew of that had confessions at various times, including Thursdays before First Friday. So if I was around I would take advantage of it. The one time I went into the confessional and confessed my sins. I waited for the priest to tell me my penance, but instead he asked me, “What would you like to do for your penance?” I was so shocked being asked to pick my own penance that there was dead silence for 15 seconds. The priest then said to pray a prayer on the back of the missalette for my penance, realizing I didn’t know what to say.

About two months later I was in the church again for confession and ended up with the same priest. I made my confession and he asked me what I wanted to do for my penance. Prepared this time, I told him, “Father, I’d like to pray five decades of the Rosary.” There was silence again in the confessional. About 15 seconds later he composed himself and asked me to say my act of contrition without further comment.


#19

[quote=PMV]I’ve commited MANY sins in the past; in fact, probably so many that it’s impossible for me to remember them all. What about sins you forgot about? Can these be forvigen if you just ask the Lord, “Please forgive me for the sins I’ve forgot about.” Also, since I probably can’t memorize all the sins I could recall, is it acceptable for me to bring a list (written or typed) into confession to make sure I’ve said all of them?
Also, how specific should you be when confessing a sin? Do you have to give a specific time, place and purpose, or just very briefly say what you did without any explanation or setting?
[/quote]

Hi PMV,
As I am not catholic I cant help you in anyway with your questions on protocol but I think the act of confession to one another is very important. I feel Christ wants this because He made us and knows how much we benefit from it and it also brings us to a humble position.I think it would be very hard to be proud and arrogant while sitting with fellow brethren and confessing. Believe in your faith, follow what is in your heart, and you will find that you are obeying the Holy Spirit.
Christ be with you,
walk in lovehttp://forums.catholic.com/images/icons/icon7.gif
edwinG


#20

I always forget stuff in confession, I never thought of a list before! I might try it out next time.


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