Re: What do I do?

I suppose the obvious answer is pray, but I 've never had this happen before after a confession.

I went this morning…and the priest (who is not our regular priest) did not ask me to say the act of contrition and did not give me any penance…but he did absolve me…

I did do the act of contrition after he said the absolution anyway…but felt too weird asking him for a penance, so should I just make up my own?

Also, I am new to the Catholic Faith…was baptized RC, but did not grow up in any faith and just started coming to the RC church over a year ago.

ONe other important matter…My sin was a mortal sin…but I do struggle with addictions and mental health problems, but even so…I cannot forgive myself this time…and I did not feel GOd’s love and forgiveness…but I have every other time Ive gone to confession.

Could it have anything to do with how the priest handled it , since he didnt ask me for the act of contrition and did not give me any spirtitual direction or penance?

Please help…

Confused and worried

Remember neither an Act of Contrition nor a formal imposition of a penance is an essential part of the sacrament.

You did the right thing by praying your Act of Contrition privately, of course. That’s what we’re supposed to do if we don’t say it in the confessional. In fact it wouldn’t hurt to make it part of your daily routine to pray it EACH night before you go to bed.

Remember too that if the priest absolved you YOU ARE ABSOLVED - the only exceptions would be if you deliberately omitted to mention a mortal sin or if you were completely unrepentant in attitude.

Remember God’s mercy is a free gift - we none of us earn it, not by the penances we are given in the confessional nor anything else. Think of the Prodigal Son - did he do anything to earn his father’s forgiveness? Not a thing! Think of this too - who are you to deny forgiveness to anyone whom God has chosen to forgive? I’m sure you wouldn’t refuse to forgive others in such circumstances, why deny it to yourself?

Now the desire to do penance is a natural response to having been forgiven, since we desire in that way to repair the damage our sins have caused and to strengthen ourselves against future sin. We should ALL be doing at least some penance on our own over and above what is imposed on us in the confessional. Do be careful though, that the nature of the penitential activity you choose isn’t something that feeds into your mental health issues and makes them worse.

I’m sorry the priest didn’t give you advice in the confessional - in my experience there are priests who don’t, or sometimes don’t. And not being your regular priest, and in view of your addictions and mental health issues, your confessor on this occasion may have felt that you’d be better served being advised by people who knew more about addiction and mental health issues.

I will keep you in my prayers. Like you, I too, and new to the faith having been baptized and confirmed this past Easter Vigil. Lily gave you some great advice. Praying the Act Of Contrition after you left the confessional was a great move, and we all really should pray it before bed.

I try to say at least three Hail Marys every morning as a way to remind me that God is watching, and wants the best for me. It also helps me to think about what may lead me to sin for the day, and helps me recognize a lot of leads. No one is perfect, but we can be sorry for our sins. If God knows that we’re truly sorry for the sins we’ve committed, he will forgive us, and give us peace to forgive ourselves. Remember, God loved you before anyone else did!

Do not doubt it, if the priest said you are absolved then Christ has absolved you and you are clean, your feelings do not change this, you are absolved.

Priests do not always ask you to say the act of contrition the correct thing to do is to pray it during the absolution quietly.

Now the priest not giving you a penance is a mistake on his part but it does not effect the absolution, you should pick a penance of your own, perhaps it could be to pray to God to have mercy on the priest for failing to give you a penance.

At one confession the priest didn’t ask me to say the prayer of contrition and I was real worried. But another priest told me I was still absolved.

I didn’t know that contrition and penance were not officially part of the sacrament.

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