First Sacrament of Penance for Adult Baptized Catholic

Hello everyone,

I was baptized in the Catholic church as a baby, but when I was a young child my parents began attending a Methodist church, so I never went through catechism, First Communion, or Confirmation.

My husband was raised Catholic, and we’ve recently made the decision to come back to the Church. We’ve found a great parish and had our marriage convalidated last weekend.:slight_smile:

Since I did not receive any of my sacraments as a child, I’ve been told that I will have to go through the RCIA program but it doesn’t start until next September, so I’ve got a whole year to wait until next Easter. I was wondering, though, at what point I would be able to go to my first reconciliation? Will I have to wait until right before the Easter Vigil next year, or since I was baptized as a Catholic, is it something I would be able to do sooner?


Hi, there.

Congratulations on your return to the faith.

For some Christians entering the Church, a priest may defer RCIA and could apply the Sacraments of Confirmation then and there. For you, it seems, the priest wants to ensure that you get a good “refresh” of Catholic tenets.

That said, since you are baptized in the Catholic faith, my understanding (and please, anyone, correct me if I am in error) is that you *should *attend the Sacrament of Reconciliation *before *Confirmation. You will receive the Sacrament of Confirmation with other candidates at the Easter Vigil.

The reason for Confession before Easter Vigil is that, while the Sacraments of Baptism, of Reconciliation and the Anointing of the Sick bring one to a state of grace, Confirmation does not. You should attain to a state of grace before Confirmation.

Jimmy Akin from CAL has written a note on such juxtapositions on his blog.

The deacon that runs our RCIA program said that any baptized Christian (not just baptized Catholic) can go to confession at anytime.

I am currently in RCIA and everyone that is already baptized will be going to confession the week before the Easter Vigil (I am currently not baptized so I am not able to go to confession yet), we are even having a special penance service for this, but I know that some people in my class have already gone to confession.

Theologically he is correct, however Canonically he is incorrect. No person my receive Catholic Sacraments unless they are Catholic or have their partors permission. It’s not an individual or personal decision alone. Catholics have a right to ask for the Sacraments, non-Catholic s do not.

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