Confessional question

Discussion in 'Questions and Answers' started by Don_D, Jan 2, 2018.

  1. Don_D

    Don_D ¡Viva Cristo Rey!

    I watched this video that Julia posted in Nov on confession;

    I was finally able to confess this week for the first time (officially) and even though I spent quite a bit of time reflecting beforehand I am now remembering sins which I need to confess that are definitely mortal sins. I feel a bit ashamed that I did not remember or confess these sins. I do not think that I should take part in communion this morning until I have confessed them but I am not sure. This has not been brought up in RCIA so I am wondering if my thinking is correct?

    My early life I was so very very lost. I pray that the Holy Spirit helps me to continue to remember these sins so that I might make Penance and receive the Lord's Mercy but most of all to identify and uproot my vice as Father Isaac speaks about in this video. After Confession and receiving the Eucharist this week I have a clarity of mind which I don't think I can honestly say I have ever experienced. When I received the Eucharist it was so sweet that I was taken back by it. I have received communion before, in sin, which I confessed. It was never like this.
  2. Frank Markus

    Frank Markus Archangels

    Hello Don,
    Happy New Year to you and to all here. If I understand correctly, you recently got baptized. This means all sins committed before your baptism are cleansed through baptism, no need to confess those. However, it is a very humble practice to do so anyway. (By the way, I was baptized eight years ago so I can relate to your situation.)
    To take communion in a state of mortal sin is not good at all, I completely agree. However, I, too, have done that, sadly.
    I admire you for the journey you've taken on. I remember my first year was total bliss. Let's keep each other in prayer 2018.
    God bless.
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  3. Don_D

    Don_D ¡Viva Cristo Rey!

    Thanks Frank, it's a long story. I wish it were not so but I messed up and should have spent more time reflecting on my life. I was Baptized Catholic as a young child thanks to my Grandmother but I think that was the last time I ever darkened the doors of a Catholic Church my entire life until 18 months ago. I'm in my late 40's now. My upbringing was an absolute nightmare of instability and chaos, drugs and all the paganism which was birthed from the 60's.
    Anyway, I became a Protestant in my late teens after a childhood full of anger, Juvenile detention and boys homes. I met a man who I respected a great deal who convinced me that doing things this way was going to get me imprisoned for life or killed and that I could change all that.
    I spent the next 20 years being a bad Protestant but doing OK in life until my children were born when I then prayed to God for the Grace to be a good Protestant :) For some reason God decided to throw some Grace my way and began opening my eyes a few years back to the Truth.
    So, as part of joining the Church my Wife and I have been attending RCIA, went to confession, had our Marriage convalidated, and received Communion together a few days ago. We will be confirmed on the 28th and our children this Easter. But, to complicate things, I went to confession earlier this year before we had started RCIA. I felt a great urgency to confess so I did and then afterward I realized that becoming a Catholic is a bit more involved than just jumping in with both feet. I am glad I did though. It was a long and I thought thorough confession (I worked on it for many weeks) but the truth of the matter is that I have such a laundry list of serious sins stretching back to my earliest remembrance. When I went to confession the other day I did think that I was thorough leaving off from my first confession so my conscious is OK there. I received communion and the next day some things came to me that I had not confessed from many years ago. I am not sure but I think that this may be a Grace actually.
    I went to Mass this morning and did not take part in communion. We had a visiting Priest who gave the Mass so I didn't get a chance to talk to Father about it yet.
    We have confession again tomorrow so I will go again and try to get it straight as well as ask Father what I should do if this happens again plus I am searching for anything I may yet have left undone.
    I hate to air my dirty laundry but to understand the situation it needs to be said. I pray that in some way God can use all this to bring Glory to Himself.
    God bless you and I will keep you in my prayers.
  4. padraig

    padraig New Member

    I do this year after year in an effort to avoid a much deserved Purgatory

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  5. Julia

    Julia Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us.

    Don_D, you are a beautiful soul. Read the message from Medjugorje 2nd January 2018. I could almost feel Blessed Mother was thinking of you when she gave that message, and no doubt there are many other child like souls out there. So in love with Our Lord, they worry about sins from the days before they came to know Him.

    I believe the Priest will tell you those old sins were cleaned away when you were baptised and to be careful not to give in to the temptation of 'Scruples.' Of course you did say you had already been Baptised as an infant. So you would be concerned they were staining your soul. I think if you ask the Priest to allow you to bring sins forward when you remember them to help you gain confidence in you spiritual journey, hopefully he will say yes.

    You do know the old saying.
    When the devil reminds you of your past, remind him of his future, that should put him to flight if he tries to torment you by reminding you of sins from your past before you woke up to the reality of Faith. God bless you and all those who sincerely seek to please our beloved God.

    You will have lots of chances to gain Mercy by forgiving anyone or everyone who upsets you especially in little ways. A great Heavenly gift to obliterate past mistakes. Mercy covers a multitude of sins. So you can never be outdone in generosity where God is concerned. God bless you. It is a great joy to read your post. Happy New Year.
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  6. Domum_Gressus

    Domum_Gressus New Member


    A priest has told me before that if I forget a sin, that it is OK to receive communion and if you feel the weight of the sin confess it next time in the confessional. When I say confession, I end by saying, "and for these and all other sins I failed to recall at this moment I am whole heartedly sorry". So, even if I forget at the time (which we all do), I am at least covered and will confess them if I remember during my next trip. (I try to go every other week)

    When I was away from the church for a time and went to my first confession, my priest stopped me short during my confession as I was repeating every detail I could think of. He told me that to be general after all these years is acceptable and everything will be covered even if I forget.

    If you are still unsure, you can still pull the priest aside prior to mass and ask. I remember how I felt and can relate to you as well.

    I hope this helps!
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  7. Frank Markus

    Frank Markus Archangels

    Hello Don,

    What a beautiful story! Your humility is amazing, I am sure THAT is the key to the kingdom. You are so scrupulous with your examination of conscience, I am sure this goes a long way with our Lord who LOVES the humble tax collector in the corner of the church beating his chest. You have probably achieved much more holiness than many, including me.

    I find it uplifting to read your post. We somehow seem to have similar stories, although I was never baptized as a child but dabbled in protestant circles in my youth. Finally I got baptized when I was 35, but that was in the Catholic Church, including confirmation.

    Need to examine my conscience more deeply and become more disciplined in actually following through with my resolutions. I use a similar formula as Domum Gressus when ending confession and then bring up things that come back to my memory during the next confession. I also try to do Divine Mercy Sunday annually.

    We are all on a journey. It gives me joy to see we are not walking alone.

    God bless you and all here,

  8. Sam

    Sam Powers

    My understanding is that if you forget a sin, you are still absolved from your sins, but should confess them the next time in confession. So I looked it up:

    Confession Primer: Forgetting to Confess a Mortal Sin
    August 16, 2014 by Jennifer Fitz
    John Hathaway recently hosted a conversation prompted by a classic comic from the New St. Joseph’s Baltimore Catechism on the serious spiritual peril you put yourself into if you go to confession but choose not to mention a mortal sin. There’s a difference, however, between forgetting and omitting.

    Here’s the scoop on how the sacrament works when you’ve got an unconfessed mortal sin:

    1. If you are aware of having committed a mortal sin, make an act of contrition right away. (That means: Pray to God and tell Him you are sorry.) At your first opportunity, go seek out a priest and make a sacramental confession. Refrain from presenting yourself for communion until you’ve been to confession.

    2. When you go to confession, you must confess all the mortal sins you are aware of. (You may also confess any venial sins you have committed. It is good for your soul to go to confession regularly even if you are not aware of any mortal sins.)

    3. If you intentionally choose not to mention one of your unconfessed mortal sins, you are committing the sin of sacrilege. Do not pass go, do not receive communion, get your rear end back in the confessional and be out with it.

    4. If you accidentally forget to list one of your mortal sins, your confession is still valid, even if you remember two seconds after you’ve stepped out of the confessional and the next person has walked in.

    5. In the event you realize after the fact that you honestly, unintentionally, failed to mention a particular mortal sin, do mention it next time you go to confession. You can say, “And I forgot to mention in my last confession the sin of _______.” But you are still absolved in the meantime and are free to receive Holy Communion.

    6. Often as we grow in the Christian life we realize we’ve been doing something that is in fact a mortal sin, but we didn’t realize it at the time. In order to be culpable (guilty) of a sin, you have to actually know it’s a sin. So if you really, truly, did not understand that something was a serious sin, you are not guilty of freely choosing to reject God and go your own way, which is what mortal sin is. Don’t play a game of “Oh gosh I didn’t know, wink wink.” But you don’t need to fear that God was trying to trick you into eternal damnation if you honestly just didn’t know better until now.

    It is a good habit, however, to go ahead and mention the sin next time you go to confession. This helps you make a clean break with your past, and resolves any doubt you have about the state of your soul.
    7. God loves you. He is trying to catch you, but He’s trying to catch you for Heaven. Indeed He’s gone through a hellish amount of trouble to get you there.

    8. If you have a nagging feeling you are guilty of a serious sin, or might be, despite having made an honest effort to learn right from wrong and to regularly seek out confession when you can, sit down and talk to your pastor about it. (You’ll need to make an appointment, and go ahead and tell him you’ll probably need an hour.) Make a decision to trust God and to therefore follow the instruction of your pastor, whom God has put in place as the shepherd of your soul, in humble obedience.

    When you find it’s nearly impossible to trust that your pastor has given you good advice, charitably assume that Our Lord is chuckling appreciatively at your thoroughness. How can Our Lord not love His little child who is so deeply concerned about doing what is right?

    9. If you find you need to go to confession more than once a week, seek pastoral guidance ASAP and follow it.

    10. If you aren’t sure whether something is a sin, when you get to confession just ask the priest. And then you’ll know.

    Recommended Reading: Fr. Christopher Smith’s very thorough and readable Guide to Confession.


    Confession Primer: Forgetting to Confess a Mortal Sin
  9. Steve79

    Steve79 Angels

    Thank you Don_D and for all the responses!
    I had the need to give my lifetime confession a week before christmas. I talked to my pastor about my sins and questions, but remembered some of both only afterwards.
    So a lot of this thread is a big help for me.
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  10. Don_D

    Don_D ¡Viva Cristo Rey!

    Thank you everyone for teaching me about God's Mercy, I feel a little foolish now but that is OK. :) You have all helped me a great deal. I knew that I would get pointed in the right direction asking here.
    Perfectionism can be virtuous at times like when building a fence or working but it can also be a great weight for us and unfortunately at times those around us too. I feel relieved after reading these responses, and I will ask Father about what is the right thing to do when I see him but I have a feeling I already know now.
    I certainly will not miss Divine Mercy.
    When I remembered the next day it was a great weight. I did not sleep well and thought about it most of the night.
    Our Parish has Holy Hour this evening and I think I will go and thank God for his Mercy and for all of you!
    Again, thank you all so much for your guidance and encouragement.
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