Too much Confession


Hi all,

Just wanted some thoughts on this:

I have been going to confession on a very regular basis (about once every week). I asked the confessor if I was being scrupulous in going so often. One likened it to taking a shower, when you are dirty you want to be clean. Another confessor suggested that if it bothers me, I should go once a month, but still encouraged me to go every week if I so desired.

Now if I am in a state of mortal sin, I can not receive communion. As both a reader and EMHC would it not be odd for me not to receive Holy Communion, especially if I am serving at that Mass in either of those capacities? AM I being too scrupulous?

Thanks for your thoughts!


Frequent confession is not the same thing as the psychological disorder called scrupulosity. The Church encourages frequent confession. See Catechism:
1458 Without being strictly necessary, confession of everyday faults (venial sins) is nevertheless strongly recommended by the Church. 59 Indeed the regular confession of our venial sins helps us form our conscience, fight against evil tendencies, let ourselves be healed by Christ and progress in the life of the Spirit. By receiving more frequently through this sacrament the gift of the Father’s mercy, we are spurred to be merciful as he is merciful: 60

Whoever confesses his sins . . . is already working with God. God indicts your sins; if you also indict them, you are joined with God. Man and sinner are, so to speak, two realities: when you hear “man” - this is what God has made; when you hear “sinner” - this is what man himself has made. Destroy what you have made, so that God may save what he has made. . . . When you begin to abhor what you have made, it is then that your good works are beginning, since you are accusing yourself of your evil works. The beginning of good works is the confession of evil works. You do the truth and come to the light. 61


I wouldn’t think so. I’ve read the JP II went to confession everyday himself. To your other question, if you go to confession before Mass then I wouldn’t worry about being in mortal sin and serving at Mass as a lector or EMHC. But you seem to be a little scrupulous to worry about being in mortal sin when going to confession once a week.


My opinion is that if you do not suffer from scrupulosity it is a very good thing to go to confession once a week. Frequent confession helps us stay away from sin and we receive many graces.
If you think that every week is too often, you could choose to go every two weeks, rather than once a month.


I was taught that you should NOT serve as an EMHC if you are in a state of mortal sin, as you cannot give what you have not received yourself. You can’t distribute the Eucharist if you yourself have not received it, and you should not receive it if in mortal sin. Just my :twocents:


Are you bothered by how often you go to confession? Has your confessor made any comments about the sins that you are confessing? These are questions only you can answer. Personally, I was told to cut back. To make sure I confess once a month.
I like what a priest giving a day retreat once said. If you are regularly saying your prayers and attending Mass, it is unlikely that you are committing any mortal sin. He was alone in the confessional and recommended that we each concentrate on the one sin that was most troubling us at the time in order that everybody in line had a chance to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
To commit a mortal sin means that you are turning your back on God, and I rather doubt that in one week’s time you have done that. Even the righteous man sins seven times a day, but these are generally venial sins. You don’t need a deep scrubbing. Just wash off the surface dirt.


Please don’t take offense with what I am about to say. It may not be your situation, but I am just throwing it out there.

Are you saying that you go to confession each week because you are committing mortal sins each week? There is such a thing as abuse of confession where people use it, in some way, as a way of justifying (that’s not the word I am looking for), continuing to commit mortal sins knowing you can go to confession on Saturday and receive on Sunday. They are not really looking to give up that sin. In order to have a good confession we say we will work to avoid sin and temptation. One of the benefits I have found of frequent confession is that I don’t commit particular sins anymore.

I would think that people who go to confession weekly are either struggling with a particular mortal sin, or are practicing devotional confession, which is fine. If a person is committing a mortal sin weekly, so much so that it interferes with a liturgical ministry, then they should reconsider serving in that particular ministry until they get a handle on their particular sin.We are called to change our lives, to consistently look at our sinful lives and repent and sin no more.

Also, are you sure what you are confessing is actually a mortal sin? Many people who are scrupulous think they are committing mortal sins when in actuality they are not. It might be a good idea to talk to your confessor. Do you go to the same priest all the time? If not I would suggest that you do so that he gets to know that pattern of your sin and help you to avoid your mortal sins.


If you are in a state of mortal sin you should go to confession. How often you go is dependant on how often you feel the need to go to confession. While a good rule of thumb is that once a month is recommended, some people may be in situations where they feel the need to go more often. You should go to confession as often as you feelthe need to go.


Confession is the most undervalued sacrament in the Catholic Church. You are bound to confession at least once a year, and can go when you feel needed. There is nothing wrong with weekly confession as I myself try to do this, and from the sounds of it, some of you are cheating yourselves out of the healing power of confession.


If you’re not in a state of mortal sin, but you’re both a reader and an EMHC, I think that going to confession once a week is very respectful and moral, because these are important offices and it’s always best to make sure we are right with God before we perform them.


I agree; handling the Blessed Sacrament in Mortal Sin is NOT a good idea! There’s no reason not to continue with frequent confession if the OP needs or wishes to.


This! :thumbsup:
i think everyone should be less concerned with what others might label them as or with what they might label themselves with re confession. It is between you and God & no one else has a right to criticise someone who wants to.go to.confession frequently. St Therese suffered for a while from scrupulosity and she didnt have a mental illness. Pope John Paul ii went to.confession every week. It just may well be the work of the Holy Spirit that you are criticising. :eek:


I recommend that you stick with one confessor and follow his direction as to how frequently to go to confession. As others have said, there is nothing wrong with frequent/weekly confession. However a problem can come in when you “shop” for confessors or pit one priests advice against another. You spoke of asking two different priests about you confession habits. After you got the question answered by the first priest there is no reason to ask another.

A regular confessor isn’t necessarily a spiritual director and doesn’t have to be your pastor. A who is convenient to you and who is regularly available is what you need. I don’t make a special appointment to see my confessor. I just always wait in his line for confession. He has given me instructions on how often to receive the sacrament and I abide by his advice.


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