So most of the time I have okay confessions where the priest acting in the person of Christ says things that range from somewhat helpful to really helpful. But about once or twice a year I have one where the advice or reflection or whatever is not so helpful. By that, I don’t mean that the priest yells or refuses to absolve me or says something I don’t want to hear about my sins, it’s more like he makes some observation that isn’t quite on point, but because I need to get in and out of the confessional quickly (there’s generally a line and/or Mass is starting in a few minutes), it’s not really the time to go into a big discussion.
I’m not blaming the priest as these situations seem to happen when I am frequently upset and crying in the confessional. I have had a problem with crying in confession since I was about 13 years old and it kept me away from confession for many years, but because of my indulgence practice and First Saturday devotions, I now have to go twice a month. While the frequency of confession means I am less nervous about it and I no doubt benefit from the graces I obtain, sometimes I can’t hold it together in there, especially since I have had a whole bunch of deaths among my family and friends in a short time. I feel sorry for the poor priest having to figure out in 30 seconds what to say to this dithering person in his confessional.
I do diligently think about what the priest says to me but sometimes I just can’t make heads or tails of it or figure out how it applies to my life. I come away hoping I was absolved of my sins (which are mostly the same ones over and over, primarily getting impatient with others) but it doesn’t give a good feeling that I understand many people have after confession. I even worry a little bit that I somehow made a bad confession even when I use a written examination of conscience beforehand (this last time I even used two different ones). I figure this is just me being overemotional and the confession was probably good from a sacramental standpoint even if I was a blubbering mess and the priest’s advice wasn’t a pearl of wisdom at this one particular time.
Has anybody else dealt with this situation where their confession didn’t feel like the greatest? What’s a good way to approach it when these situations occur?