Distraction from priest during act of contrition

I’ve been going to confession more regularly recently, and on 2 separate occasions I was distracted by the priest during my act of contrition. Basically, he asked me to say the act of contrition and while I was doing so he was mumbling something under his breath (it sounded unintelligible to me). It was just loud enough for me to not be able to focus on what I was doing.

I assume he was saying a prayer and most other priests say it silently to themselves. If that is a correct assumption, does anyone know what specific prayer he might have been saying? Thank you!

Once or twice it’s happened to me in confession that a priest will begin the prayer of absolution - the one that begins ‘God the Father of mercies …’ while I am saying my Act of Contrition. That’s permissible, although you should listen for the words ‘I absolve you of your sins’.

You’re right, it takes an effort to keep focused on your act of contrition - but remember the Act of Contrition strictly need not even be said in the confessional, so you can always say it again afterwards.

Almost certainly your priest was doing the same in your case. And of course the prayer of absolution is NEVER said silently - how would you know you had been absolved if it were?

When I was a kid the priest always said the words of absolution (in Latin) while I was saying the Act of Contrition, Was this an older priest?

I’m assuming it wasn’t the prayer of absolution since it was said (in Latin) after my act of contrition, which is part of the reason why I am wondering what actually was said. That’s what I assumed it would have been…but then he still said it. As for whether or not it was an older priest, I’m not certain. I don’t think it was (if I could tell the voice correctly), but since I’m not a face-to-face kind of guy I don’t 100% know which priest it was.

he was probably reciting the full formula for absolution, the common practice as long as I have been confessing, over 50 years, is to say the act of contrition while the priest recites the first part of the absolution prayer, and he ends with the final words of the forumula and the blessing. Often nowdays however I am asked to say the contrition prayer outside along with my penance to save time.

I have also had older priests say the words of absolution while I was saying my act of contrition. I believe this was common using the older form of confession. Younger priests tend to separate the two prayers so that there isn’t the distraction of trying to listen to one while you’re saying the other. And frankly, the prayer of absolution is so beautiful that I want to hear it clearly!

Thank you, all, for your help!

The older priest that I go to for confession always says the prayer absolution while I say my act of contrition. The first time I went to confession with him, I was startled when he started speaking at the same time I was speaking, but I figured it out. I do find it distracting, but I have learned to just concentrate on what I am saying.

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