Sloppy Confession - is it over yet?


#1

I went on a silent retreat lead by two priests a few weeks ago. During a penitential service before Confession hours, the priest that lead the service (the other was absent) explained that it was going to be a different kind of Confession than what we might be used to; he wanted us mainly to bring a "rock" (i.e., something that was weighing on our hearts), though we could (should?) confess any sin that might come to mind as well. He told us that we would not need to say the Act of Contrition in Confession because we had already said a certain formula in the penance service (I thought this was weird, and I was planning to say a private Act of Contrition afterward).
The other priest apparently did not know about this arrangement; he didn't want a "rock", he wanted actual sins and the Act of Contrition as well (whodathunk, lol!).
The trouble is that I spent almost an hour and a half waiting in line for Confession, trying to think of a "rock" and the right way to explain it, and I didn't bring my cue-card for the Act of Contrition (I know it by heart, but my brain freezes when I have to say in the presence of a priest) because the first priest said we wouldn't use it. By the time it was my turn to confess, I was very nervous and angry (thinking does that to me :p). I hadn't written down what I was planning to say and it came out more intensely than I intended, plus I told the priest that I wasn't sure if I had contrition. Then of course I couldn't say the formula for Contrition without lots of prompting (the priest wasn't very thrilled).
All I confessed was "the rock", and it probably contained venial sin besides just being burdensome. I think I had contrition because I wouldn't have brought "the rock" if I didn't want to love God and amend my life, but, like I told the priest, I wasn't sure.

I received Holy Communion several times since then. Can anyone tell me if I made a sacriligious Confession and then followed it up with several sacriligious Communions? :(


#2

You followed instructions, although it might be argued that the priest who set up these "rockin'" confessions ;) was setting up illicit confessions in the first place. I would not think that your confession was sacrilegious, unless there were mortal sins that you knowingly did not confess.

I would ignore such things and confess the usual way. It is hard enough for me to do a proper examination of conscience and follow the steps to confess my sins as it is - "free-form" sacraments just serve to add confusion into the mix.


#3

The idea seems like a classic case of 'anything goes'. It is all very weel to use an analogy in what we are doing as we go to confession (freeing ourselves of 'rocks' which weigh is down is a very apt one in fact). But to make it seemingly the focus of a sacramental confession seems over the top - the sacrament is beautiful as it is.

I would go to confession and mention this to the priest who hears your confession. That way your mind can be at rest, knowing that any sins related to this, if necessary, have been washed away.

Best wishes

Martin


#4

If you are aware of unconfessed mortal sins, you should confess them. If not, you are fine. The Sacrament requires contrition, but not the recitation of any specifically worded act of contrition. (This 'confess one sin' idea is problematic. I would avoid confession to that priest in the future, if possible.)

The Catechism on Confession:
vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p2s2c2a4.htm


#5

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:2, topic:324581"]
You followed instructions, although it might be argued that the priest who set up these "rockin'" confessions ;) was setting up illicit confessions in the first place.... It is hard enough for me to do a proper examination of conscience and follow the steps to confess my sins as it is - "free-form" sacraments just serve to add confusion into the mix.

[/quote]

:D
Yes, and I am confused enough as it is.

[quote="Martin15, post:3, topic:324581"]

I would go to confession and mention this to the priest who hears your confession. That way your mind can be at rest, knowing that any sins related to this, if necessary, have been washed away.

Best wishes

Martin

[/quote]

In my most recent Confession, I mentioned that I felt I had made a "sloppy" Confession previously and might not have had contrition, but I forgot to mention the fact that I had received the Eucharist several times since then. I understand that this was absolved so long as I didn't deliberately omit mortal sin, but if it was mortal I will need to mention it next time - and I was trying to figure out if there had been any sin at all, much less mortal. Oh well, I can mention it anyway. :shrug:


#6

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