[quote=Reformed Rob]Makes sense. Yeah, intention was where I was coming from, but also in regard to being outside the Church too.
Ok, so, if a Catholic has perfect contrition, and his sin(s) is forgiven for that, then why go to confession? Isn’t it kind of reduntant? Obviously I’m missing something here, but it seems kind of overly-simple to say “If he’s not wanting to go to confession, then he’s not perfectly contrite.”
Does that make sense?
Yes and no. I mean, you are clear enough, but I like going to confession and find it healing, so I never really think about it in terms of why. I think in terms of when. I like the graces received, so I go. I find it helpful to have something to do out of obedience (like the penance assigned), rather than always deciding for myself. Somehow I am freer that way. Not sure how to describe it, but I find it easier not to deceive myself that way, so it is freer from the traps that await the fallen man. I actively recognize the sacrament as a benefit to me, so that is a reason for me to go even if I am not in “a state of mortal sin”.
Perfect contrition means a sorrow for sin based on our love for God and is a gift from God that we can pray to have. If we are granted this gift, then out of our love for God, several things should follow: a desire to please our Beloved, a trust that he has established ways that are for our benefit in cases when we offend, a desire to draw close to him, etc. If one is Catholic, one will thus express all this by a wish to go to confession as we know God would want us to go, we will receive grace there to increase our closeness to him, and that he made confession for our benefit in these situations. There would be no particular reason not to go, really, assuming you know about the existence of the sacrament and understand its nature.
A Protestant, however, might well have the perfect contrition, but not have the doctrine in his head that would lead to an active desire to go to confession. But if he had the doctrine, he would desire to go because his Beloved has provided the sacrament for these occasions.
Many things in love are redundant, but then again, they are not redundant. There is the spiral closer together, sort of a dance:hmmm: