Tonight was our parish’s Lenten Penitential Service, the only confessions scheduled before the Triduum. We’re a parish of ~450 families. 21 people at the Penitential Service, most of whom made a beeline for the door as soon as private confessions started. Sad really…
Maybe they were like me (or at least some of them)?
I went to the service because I’d never been to one before and I haven’t had my first confession yet, so I just left at that point.
Some of them probably went in thinking “I’m definately going to confession.” Then they got uncomfortable and nervous and then just left.
No, every one of them was a regular parishioner.
For years these penitential services included general absolution but that stopped 8 years ago. Since then the penitential services have been poorly attended. I often wonder if it’s worth having the services and if just scheduling a few afternoons or evenings of confessions during Lent might not be a better choice.