Is my priest excommunicated?


#1

When I was in a class of his, he was giving examples of sins (or things that were not sins) to us in his class.

Well I was reading the canon and it says,

Canon 984: §1.** A confessor is prohibited completely from using knowledge acquired from confession to the detriment of the penitent even when any danger of revelation is excluded. **§2. A person who has been placed in authority cannot use in any manner for external goverance the knowledge about sins which he has received in confession at any time.

Does this mean that my priest received an automatic excommunication, since he used knowledge acquired from a confession?

Thanks!!


#2

No. He wasn’t speaking of any individual person only of generalities.

May God bless you.


#3

Ok!! Thanks Trishie!

Now to expect a post from 1ke saying how scrupulous I am and how I need some PROFESSIONAL HELP! :smiley: :smiley: :smiley: :stuck_out_tongue: :smiley: :smiley: :smiley:

We all love him! :slight_smile:


#4

If a priest can never speak of a sin again just because he heard of the sin in confession, then old priests can never say any word to describe a sin because they have heard it all.


#5

This means he can’t hold it against you later. If you confess to having stolen money and then the Church suggests you as an usher he cannot say, “Oh don’t make him an usher. He has a theft problem.”


#6

Priests and Bishops use information they have received in the confessional, without revealing the individual penitent, all the time.

It's part of their job.

I suspect that parts of the Catechism were written from experience gained in the confessional.


#7

Excommunication happens when the priest directly breaks the seal of confession, which is not what your priest did.


#8

[quote="Irishgal49, post:5, topic:292454"]
This means he can't hold it against you later. If you confess to having stolen money and then the Church suggests you as an usher he cannot say, "Oh don't make him an usher. He has a theft problem."

[/quote]

This is correct, and I might add the following. For people who are staff members or voluteers in positions of authority in a parish; they should seek out a priest other than their paster as a confessor. I know of priests who tell their staff members that.


#9

[quote="ConstantineTG, post:4, topic:292454"]
If a priest can never speak of a sin again just because he heard of the sin in confession, then old priests can never say any word to describe a sin because they have heard it all.

[/quote]

This sums it up quite nicely.


#10

[quote="JD27076, post:3, topic:292454"]
Ok!! Thanks Trishie!

Now to expect a post from 1ke saying how scrupulous I am and how I need some PROFESSIONAL HELP! :D :D :D :p :D :D :D

We all love him! :)

[/quote]

You are scrupulous and you need some PROFESSIONAL HELP!

I am aswell but 1ke is right


#11

[quote="JD27076, post:1, topic:292454"]
When I was in a class of his, he was giving examples of sins (or things that were not sins) to us in his class.

Well I was reading the canon and it says,

Canon 984: §1.** A confessor is prohibited completely from using knowledge acquired from confession to the detriment of the penitent even when any danger of revelation is excluded. **§2. A person who has been placed in authority cannot use in any manner for external goverance the knowledge about sins which he has received in confession at any time.

Does this mean that my priest received an automatic excommunication, since he used knowledge acquired from a confession?

Thanks!!

[/quote]

Note the words: "to the detriment of the penitent", and "for external governance". These show the limits.

CIC Can. 129
§1 Those who are in sacred orders are, in accordance with the provisions of law, capable of the power of governance, which belongs to the Church by divine institution. This power is also called the power of jurisdiction.
§2 Lay members of Christ's faithful can cooperate in the exercise of this same power in accordance with the law.


#12

[quote="Deo_Gratias42, post:7, topic:292454"]
Excommunication happens when the priest directly breaks the seal of confession, which is not what your priest did.

[/quote]

This is not exactly an accurate description of the canon mentioned by the OP. The prohibition is on "using knowledge acquired from confession to the detriment of the penitent." Knowledge can be "used" even when it is not repeated or revealed. This would happen if, for example, a priest declined to hire someone for a job at the church because he knew from confession that the candidate had committed embezzlement in the past. That would not be what most people would consider "breaking the seal of confession," but it is still forbidden.


#13

[quote="MarkThompson, post:12, topic:292454"]
This is not exactly an accurate description of the canon mentioned by the OP. The prohibition is on "using knowledge acquired from confession to the detriment of the penitent." Knowledge can be "used" even when it is not repeated or revealed. This would happen if, for example, a priest declined to hire someone for a job at the church because he knew from confession that the candidate had committed embezzlement in the past. That would not be what most people would consider "breaking the seal of confession," but it is still forbidden.

[/quote]

I know that. What you're referring to is indirectly breaking the seal of confession, which may either be mortally or venially sinful depending on the circumstances, but would not result in a priest being excommunicated. The seal is directly violated if some object of the seal together with the identity of penitent's identity is revealed without the latter's permission. The seal is indirectly violated if from that which is said or revealed there arises the danger that someone will acquire a knowledge of that which is protected by the seal of confession. Any use of knowledge derived from confession which is burdensome to the penitent, is considered by some moralists as an indirect violation of the seal.


#14

I heard one **young **priest say that he had heard it all after one week! He also said “Satan is very boring”.

I wonder if was excommunicated for saying that? :stuck_out_tongue:


#15

[quote="Edmundus1581, post:14, topic:292454"]
I heard one **young **priest say that he had heard it all after one week! He also said "Satan is very boring".

I wonder if was excommunicated for saying that? :p

[/quote]

That brought a smile to my face. Priest gets in a Satan zing. Kudos!


#16

I really can't believe this thread got so many posts when it was answered after the very first reply. Too many talkative people on these forums :D


#17

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