Did I make a bad/invalid confession?

I went to confession today and had my list of sins prepared. I started the confession, named a couple of big things, and the priest gave some lengthy advice. He then asked me what else so I named a couple more things followed by him briefly speaking.

I intended to finish with the list I had, but he then gave me a penance and asked me to say the act of contrition leaving me a bit flustered. Now I’m unsure if my confession was valid since I did not finish confessing. I know one thing left was mortal and no matter what that will need to be mentioned next time.

Thoughts? I had plans to go to mass tomorrow and Sunday for the first time in several weeks. I cannot likely make it to other scheduled confessions for over a week.

Maybe I should have stopped him, but I’m not positive I would have been able to communicate well at the time. I tend to be highly anxious when it comes to confession and approaching the sacrament is hard enough in itself.

Sounds like from your account above that it wasn’t your fault you couldn’t finish. In that case, it’s a valid confession and you can receive communion, but in the future, you may want to rattle off your list a bit more fluidly and be mindful of pauses (?).


Your intent was to confess. It is valid even if you actually forgot some sins. We hear consistently from priests that we need not - please do not - go into lurid or gory detail. Type and number. Just the facts.

Spiritual advice and counsel is a separate matter and not part of the absolution. It is icing on the cake, but the cake is not frosted until it is fully baked, if you grasp my weak anology.


I think it helps to have a regular confessor to go to so that these situations happen less. It’s really helped me :slightly_smiling_face:

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That happens to me quite a bit as well. I got to a place that has confession for thirty minutes before the afternoon mass, and the priest is frequently in a bit of a rush. If he cuts me off before I get to all my mortal sins then I’ll generally make sure I get them in, even if he’s already given me my penance. If they’re venial sins, then I trust that God knows I want to confess them and that I’m good.

As a result though, I’ve learned to always start with the mortal sins to make sure they’re covered, then tackle the rest.

From what you’ve described, you should be fine. ^^

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Thank you for your responses! There weren’t any pauses I noticed and I wasn’t trying to go into detail, but was simply naming the sins, though sometimes I group them to make it easier to get through i.e. I’ll say a few related things in a single statement, but I don’t personally think of that as detail. I can see now that might possibly be confusing in the future regarding if I am done with my confession though.

I tend to go to this priest and it is the norm for him to comment throughout a confession. He begins to interject immediately at the end of a statement (or slightly before), but he always ask “what’s next?” or “anything else?” before absolution so I didn’t expect the abrupt end. He seemed a bit more rushed than normal so it is possible he needed to leave.

Luckily, I may be able to go again tomorrow. It slipped my mind it was the beginning of the month and the parish has evening confession every first Friday I think.

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