I know someone who just became catholic this Easter. They went to confession but admitted they did not give it any thought so naturally they left out many sins, including some grave ones. I suggested they mention those sins when they go to confession again but they said it is not necessary since they were already resolved. I realize if we truly forget a sin then we are still forgiven…but this situation doesn’t sound like it falls into that category. Thoughts?
I once found a “Review of Conscience” outside one confessional, and I realized that in years and years, I had probably never done confession correctly.
Let me include one example so you can see what I mean. With this, it helps one remember sins one might otherwise overlook.
If we go to confession, remember after the fact we omitted confessing a mortal sin, we are forgiven but would need to confess it next time in confession.
Perhaps they were referring to their Baptism…were they Baptized?
The previous poster has a good suggestion for anyone seeking to make a good confession…
Mortal sins need to be confessed in kind and number. Sincerely forgotten mortal sins need to be confessed. If a person refuses to confess mortal sins, it can invalidate the confession. If someone “refuses to confess forgotten mortal sins in kind and number it can incur new sin” as senior apologist Jimmy Akin writes.
I am having my first confession tomorrow and I am 55 years old. I will do my best to be honest, but I have had an eventful life with lots of twists, regrets and traumas.
I hope our priest will understand that I am simply unable to remember every single thing. He’s a very compassionate man, so I’m sure he will help me along.
I am 36 and recently did the same. Coming from a Lutheran background we all (collectively) confessed that we are sinners each and every week (and received collective absolution), but I’d never done a confession as such, and therefore had a lifetime of them. Afterwards, I’d realized how many big ones I’d forgotten, but had focused on a handful that had bothered me for 20 years. I did truly forget.
But I like the post here a week or so back which said to accept the absolution given, in persona Christi, which is also what we were told prior to the penance service.
I confessed 42 years last month. Now, I’m getting ready for my second confession. You go in feelings awful and come out feeling full of joy.
Just an update - I wasn’t nervous at all (says a lot about the kindness of our priest), and I quite enjoyed the experience!
I think the Sacrament of Reconciliation is a wonderful thing.
One is obligated to confess all mortal sins (number and kind and that which changes the kind -like it was a chalice one stole and thus also sacrilege)
Such needs to be addressed in confession (they should mention that they did not give it any thought)
Jimmy Akin senior Apologist of Catholic Answers:
(there can be certain exceptions…like a dying person is not able to…or a person’s particular case of scrupulosity may give confessor reason to guide them particularly…etc but they are exceptions.)
Thanks for all the replies!. I shared it with the person in question and he decided he will be going back to confession on Saturday.