Saturday, October 04, 2008

some reasons TO go to confession that are often used NOT TO go to confession

I was coming back from hearing confessions for a retreat when I started thinking about some reasons that I've used to not go to confession that should have been a reason to go to confession. I tried to think of ten but didn't quite make it. Any other suggestions?

1. It's been too long. Catholics should go to confession AT LEAST ONCE a year. In my life, I've gone longer than a year and then been afraid to go to confession because I was afraid of what the priest would say.

2. I'll probably commit the same sin again after I confess it. But how can I stop it if I just keep it hidden away. Confession may be the first step on the process of getting over it.

3. The sin is too serious. God won't forgive me for it. God's forgiveness surpasses anything we can imagine. All he asks of us is to ask for it.

4. I need to stop committing the sin before I confess it. Related to the above two. God can forgive you and maybe you need to bring it out of the darkness in order to conquer it.


Hillary said...

5. I'm not actually convinced it was a sin.

Adoro te Devote said...

Oh, my, thanks for this post. I just gave a talk to parents on First Reconciliation (my prferred term..Confession). And all you have cited were reasons I stayed away for 12 years (including before my Confirmation....imagine the implications of THAT...)

Anyway, here are other common objections that may not fit into this post, but maybe future ones:

* I'm afraid the priest will know me in my sin and won't like me anymore (or..respect, associate with, will despise me, be shocked, etc...)

* I'm going to get yelled at for being away for so long

* I can go straight to God without Confession like my Protestant friends

* I'm not "ready" yet

* I'm not sorry; I don't have true contrition or a firm purpose of amendment. (Um...this was one of mine; I knew that was an important element and so I couldn't be forgiven without it. I've since actually gone to Confession to confess not being sorry for something I KNEW I should be sorry for....and I'll just say this: INSTANT CONVERSION in the confessional when I stated very clearly that I knew that God was offended by what I had done. I use that event to explain to people that they shouldn't stay away if they think they aren't sorry enough...God will act if we let Him.)

* I'm a good person. It's not like I've murdered anyone! (If you judge yourself by such a low standard....but that's not what God uses to judge us. "Kill" has different meanings....etc)

* My conscience isn't bothering me (....because it hasn't been formed...)

Um...I know there are more, will come back if they occur to me.

Hidden One said...

13. It's inconvenient. [So is Hell!]