How do i know if i commited a perfect act of contrition?

Earlier today i found myself falling into mortal sin. I felt guilty, burdened and my heart was so heavy and i felt misreable. I couldn’t believe i let myself sin again after just having gone to confession last week for the same sin. And so i prayed. I prayed for forgiveness, for my guilt to be washed away, i prayed to the saints and our lady and prayed psalms. I still felt burdened and guilty, but i kept praying. Eventually, i found myself praying deeply, from my heart and i felt Gods grace light up within me. I told him how i felt and that I dont want this sin in my life anymore and that im sorry. I felt my burden and guilt go away, i felt so joyful and happy and i continued praying. I told him that i felt like the prodigal son, returning to the lord and i felt even more strongly Gods presence. I thought maybe all this joy and love from the Lord that im feeling might mean i have committed a perfect act of contrition, but im unsure and its unclear to me if i still need to go to confession.

Mortal sin yes you must always Confess in Confession ASAP. The sorrow and everything you described is good but it still needs to be Confessed to Father to be absolved. Don’t put that off.


Yes you still need to go confession. Perfect contrition includes the intention to confess as soon as possible.


that part is simple: you still should go to Confession

Check out Catechism #1452

"When it arises from a love by which God is loved above all else, contrition is called “perfect” (contrition of charity). Such contrition remits venial sins; it also obtains forgiveness of mortal sins if it includes the firm resolution to have recourse to sacramental confession as soon as possible."


You can’t ‘commit’ a perfect act of contrition.

You can never know if you’ve made one for sure, but you have to make a perfect act of contrition with plan to go to confession. That is a condition of making one.

Please go-to confession and confess your mortal sins in species and genus or with as much or as little detail as you need to.



^^ This is the part that often gets overlooked! (Bold in above quote is mine).

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit