Validity of Absolution?


#1

I've seen so many differing opinions on this kind of thing, so I thought I'd ask.

At the words of absolution, what's the verdict on something like: "...through the ministry of the Church may God give you pardon and peace, as God forgives you all of your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit."?

Differing opinions welcomed, of course, but I would especially like the sources of your opinions if at all possible.


#2

If the words, “I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,” are not said, it is not valid. This is what I understand.


#3

[quote="YoungTradCath, post:2, topic:299912"]
If the words, "I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit," are not said, it is not valid. This is what I understand.

[/quote]

As did I, however Fr Serpa's response here gave me reason to wonder otherwise:

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=44959


#4

Would anyone else like to comment please?


#5

[quote="Catholic4Christ, post:1, topic:299912"]
I've seen so many differing opinions on this kind of thing, so I thought I'd ask.

At the words of absolution, what's the verdict on something like: "...through the ministry of the Church may God give you pardon and peace, as God forgives you all of your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit."?

Differing opinions welcomed, of course, but I would especially like the sources of your opinions if at all possible.

[/quote]

You can rely on Fr. Serpa's opinion. And since you did all God requires you can be sure your sins are forgiven. Also, if no mortal sin was involved receiving Holy Communion will wipe away any venial sins.

You have done all that God requires. You asked the opinion of a reliable Catholic Theologian and he gave you a truthful answer. So, let it go. :thumbsup:


#6

The worst absolution I heard came from an Oblate priest: “May God forgive your sins as far as you feel you need to be forgiven. In the name of the Father. . .”

Joe


#7

[quote="Jguerra, post:6, topic:299912"]
The worst absolution I heard came from an Oblate priest: "May God forgive your sins as far as you feel you need to be forgiven. In the name of the Father. . ."

Joe

[/quote]

Oh, Lordy... :eek:


#8

[quote="Jguerra, post:6, topic:299912"]
The worst absolution I heard came from an Oblate priest: "May God forgive your sins as far as you feel you need to be forgiven. In the name of the Father. . ."

Joe

[/quote]

Yikes!


#9

[quote="Linusthe2nd, post:5, topic:299912"]
You can rely on Fr. Serpa's opinion. And since you did all God requires you can be sure your sins are forgiven. Also, if no mortal sin was involved receiving Holy Communion will wipe away any venial sins.

You have done all that God requires. You asked the opinion of a reliable Catholic Theologian and he gave you a truthful answer. So, let it go. :thumbsup:

[/quote]

This is not true. Please stop telling people that their sins are forgiven simply because they did what God asked them to do. If the form of absolution isn't correct, there is no absolution and the sins aren't absolved. If it isn't an actual priest saying the words of absolution, the sins are not absolved. If the priest doesn't have the proper jurisdiction from the bishop, and it is not in the danger of death, there is no valid absolution and the sins are not forgiven.

The section on the Sacrament of Penance in moral theology books is quite extensive in these regards. Before a priest is ordained and/or given faculties to hear confessions, the bishop must examine him to be certain he is competent in these regards. From what I've read here and other places online, it would appear many priests need to be re-examined and possibly have their permission to hear confessions removed until they are deemed competent.


#10

[quote="Deo_Gratias42, post:9, topic:299912"]
This is not true. Please stop telling people that their sins are forgiven simply because they did what God asked them to do. If the form of absolution isn't correct, there is no absolution and the sins aren't absolved. If it isn't an actual priest saying the words of absolution, the sins are not absolved. If the priest doesn't have the proper jurisdiction from the bishop, and it is not in the danger of death, there is no valid absolution and the sins are not forgiven.

The section on the Sacrament of Penance in moral theology books is quite extensive in these regards. Before a priest is ordained and/or given faculties to hear confessions, the bishop must examine him to be certain he is competent in these regards. From what I've read here and other places online, it would appear many priests need to be re-examined and possibly have their permission to hear confessions removed until they are deemed competent.

[/quote]

I'm going to side with Fr. Serpa on this one. Yes, I would agree that it is objectively grave matter for a priest to change the words of absolution...but Ego te absolvo..."I absolve you..." is only the Roman Rite formula in use in the Latin Church. Our brothers and sisters in the Byzantine Rite are absolved using the following formula:

God, through Nathan the prophet, forgave David his sins; and Peter shedding bitter tears over his denial; and the adulteress weeping at his feet; and the publican and the prodigal son. May this same God, through me, a sinner, forgive + you everything in this life and in the life to come. And may you stand uncondemned before His awesome judgment-seat, for His Name is blessed forever and ever. Amen.

According to the Magisterium, the Eastern Catholic and Orthodox Churches validly celebrate the sacrament of penance.


#11

[quote="Catholic4Christ, post:1, topic:299912"]
I've seen so many differing opinions on this kind of thing, so I thought I'd ask.

At the words of absolution, what's the verdict on something like: "...through the ministry of the Church may God give you pardon and peace, as God forgives you all of your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit."?

Differing opinions welcomed, of course, but I would especially like the sources of your opinions if at all possible.

[/quote]

Without citing any authority I would say those words would make it invalid. The same principle applies to all the sacraments. Both the form (the words said) and the matter must be as prescribed by the Church. The minister who administers a sacrament isn't given discretion to alter the form of a sacrament.

If a minister intended to say the correct words rather than deliberately saying an alternative form of words but accidentally said the words incorrectly then the principle that the Church supplies might apply in those circumstances. No doubt, this is something theologians debate.


#12

[quote="Deo_Gratias42, post:9, topic:299912"]
This is not true. Please stop telling people that their sins are forgiven simply because they did what God asked them to do. If the form of absolution isn't correct, there is no absolution and the sins aren't absolved. If it isn't an actual priest saying the words of absolution, the sins are not absolved. If the priest doesn't have the proper jurisdiction from the bishop, and it is not in the danger of death, there is no valid absolution and the sins are not forgiven.

The section on the Sacrament of Penance in moral theology books is quite extensive in these regards. Before a priest is ordained and/or given faculties to hear confessions, the bishop must examine him to be certain he is competent in these regards. From what I've read here and other places online, it would appear many priests need to be re-examined and possibly have their permission to hear confessions removed until they are deemed competent.

[/quote]

You are mixing forgiveness with absolution. One is an act of God and the other is a juridical act of the Church. Forgiveness of sin is granted with absolution but it is not limited to absolution. Probably his sins have been forgiven but the individual has not been absolve and thus he is not reconciled with the Church. While the person should not freak out about the possibility of dying in a state of mortal sin, probably he should still refrain from receiving communion. I agree with the rest of your observation and the issue should be brought up with the priest first and later with the diocesan bishop if there is no indication of change.


#13

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