Was my Confession Valid?

I’m not trolling. I just am uncertain if I was trying to deceive father or not. :shrug:

I’m not sure what the point is seeing father would be if I can’t remember what he said. A notebook would work fine. :slight_smile:

I’m not sure what the point is seeing father would be if I can’t remember what he said. A notebook would work fine. :slight_smile:

One again:
you seem to believe that Spiritual Direction is like getting a shot…you go, hear the words, and you’re “cured” of whatever spiritual ailment you have.
No. It’s a long process, with much learning, discernment, inner contemplation, and LISTENING. Develop the skill of listening to people who are more experienced, priests, people who are catechists, trained religious, etc. You gloss over every comment. I’m glad you have such a cheerful attitude, :slight_smile: but you don’t seem to realize how serious these issues you have with being confused are.
Just ask your priest to recommend a mentor or spiritual director if he won’t do it.
It’s important if you don’t want to spend the rest of your life wondering…

First, I second the suggestion that you talk to Father about whether you’re having scruples, or if you’re just confused about where to draw the line between sin and not-sin. (Or even between sin and good-act.)

Second, taking notes on something said in Confession while you’re in Confession, or recording what is said during Confession, is actually a violation of the seal of the confessional (if I remember correctly, and if I’m not remembering extraordinary cases). If you can’t remember what Father said, then you just can’t remember. Possibly God doesn’t want you to remember.

However… it is okay to tell the priest that you are nervous about this stuff, and that you need some kind of record of exact phrasing of his instructions, because nervousness makes you forget. If the priest thinks it will help, he can do that for you. He probably won’t, because he won’t want to get close to violating the seal of the confessional and your rights, either. (And priests have even more responsibilities than we do.)

What is more likely is that your priest will have a talk with you outside of Confession, so that both of you can talk more freely, take notes, etc. Spiritual guidance usually is done outside the confessional, for this very reason.

So if I were you, I would make things easier on Father, and just make an appointment to talk to him about whether or not you’re scrupulous, and what you should do in order to be able to trust that your Confession is valid.

If you are scrupulous, you are often going to “feel like” normal, okay things are sinful, or that Confessions are invalid. You have to trust your priest to sort things out. So that’s my advice.

Mantaka is correct. You don’t take notes or record confessions. I don’t think that is what he was actually referring to "though. I think he was alluding to the spiritual guidance/advice that may be offered. However, I see a problem with most of his response that are offered and that is the constant excuses that he gives on almost anything. As he is in collage he will have to cultivate his memory somewhat. Not everything in collage-or life-can be recorded or written in a notebook. I pray that he will get over “I can’t” attitude and develop a more positive, spiritual outlook. No more excuses, I pray.

I think we all have a bit of selective memory and we tend to remember what we want or if it is important to us. Do you really want to remember?? As you can remember all that wonderful music and the notes to play…I just wonder. Peace.

Do I need to re-confess all the sins because I made this thread? :confused:

You need counseling.
Don’t ask again of strangers on the internet.
Meet in real life with a priest and ask for more instruction. He likely doesn’t realize your RCIA process was incomplete in this area.

What you really need to do is find a balance in your life an stop overthinking and trying to intellectualize everything. Why is it that you continue to avoid getting a spiritual director? If not a priest, how about a Brother or a knowledgeable Sister? I am afraid that you will reach the point where no one will really want to offer you suggestions on CA because you will not take it to heart. Just my opinion. ME

I’ll schedule an appointment with father when the semester is over. Unfortunately at the time being I am too busy.

On a side note, I told my mother I got the cigars. At first she seemed distressed, but later she stopped being distressed and seemed to not really care. :shrug:

It’s really not about cigars.
You continue to wear rose colored glasses with these questions of yours.
If you wish a good relationship with Christ Jesus, and a firm grasp of what the Church teaches, you will seek more education in the faith. You have a long holy life ahead of you. Formation is not a one-off thing. All of us continue to learn about our faith until the day we die.
Or at least, we are called to.

I remember such awful doubts about the boundaries in sins. I once took the blame in confession for something that wasn’t my fault. The priest chastised me and told my little ten-year-old brain that I would go to hell.

I will never forget that. I don’t have a spiritual director, but if I did. I would have a lot to say.


Atta boy. Nice job, sir!


17 years later I’m still working on it. It’s better, but it’s still there.

:eek: I can’t believe a priest would say that, especially to a child of ten! Considering your young age and your very anxious state I highly doubt you committed a mortal sin. It not like you purposely lied in confession to somehow “deceive” God and the priest. :rolleyes:

Years ago, like in the 60’s priests did not interact with children that much, and people confessed int he dark in a box, and both parties were fairly anonymous, if you will.
That’s why the advent of face to face is so good…it removed the tendency to believe the other person is perfect and the other person is fatally flawed.
You begin to see and treat each other like real people. both children of God.
Much has changed. For the better.
I remember many children wetting their pants there were so afraid of the confessional.
Confessions took exactly 2 minutes. Go in rattle off some perfunctory thing like “I disobeyed my parents” and he gave you ten hail Mary’s and you left. Whew. :crossrc: Down for another month!
Things are better now. That’s why people long for the good old days, they seldom remember the parts that weren’t so good.

I thoroughly enjoy the dark of the box. I’ve never understood the allure of the added commentary and advice that seems to be more prevalent when going face to face. Personally, I’m in there to get absolution for sins, not to get counseling from someone who may or may not be qualified and who is basing such commentary and advice on just a snippet of information.
If done behind the curtain, it’s very realistic to be in and out in mere moments, like ripping off a band aid. I find it quite comforting myself.

By going behind the curtain, it largely eliminates the “human factor” of the confession and enables Jesus to more easily speak through the priest. Just as the sacrament was designed.
At least that is my opinion.

Is there any reason against being absolved AND receiving counsel from someone who is undoubtedly far more qualified to navigate the spiritual life than either you or I am?

I sympathize with this attitude, I really do.

But sometimes I wonder whether or not we’re constantly underestimating our priests and utterly taking them for granted.

“Give me absolution, Father, and shut up. You have nothing to tell me!”


Forgive me, but I find that odd.

Well, my opinion is that priests who have gone through seminary are very well equipped to counsel.
Also I believe that it’s not a card that we punch to get absolved, but a process to conversion. For me, conversion involved encouragement and counsel/.

Certainly there is nothing wrong with it and I never said there was. I just don’t want to hear it from someone (anyone for that matter) who only hears what I did with no background. Personally it is unfair to the priest to be expected to counsel anyone based on the limited information given in a confession and I would imagine that when someone goes face to face the priest may be more inclined to talk more. That is all I am saying.
I certainly do not say (and I don’t think my post implies) that I tell the priest to shut up. I can’t imagine myself ever doing something like that. I find it odd that you would jump to that conclusion. If the priest wants to go on a long counsel session on my confessed sins he is more than welcome to do so. I don’t say or do anything to keep him from that. It is just my experience that they do far less (if any) counseling when going in the dark.

Besides, I believe that the absolution is just as valid going behind the curtain as it is going face to face. If it was any less valid (or invalid) I’m sure the RCC would end the practice of going in the dark.

Fair enough. :slight_smile:

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