Confession

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monica_rose

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I was confirmed this April 2004 and have received this sacrament 4 times now. I have heard others say how good they feel after receiving this sacrament, but I have yet to experience any good feelings and have a hard time facing the priest at mass for several weeks after. What’s my problem?
 
There is need to be afraid of the priest. He is not judging you. If anything he is happy that you recieved the sacrament. The good feeling wil come to you. Remember a watched a pot doesn’t boil.

Glory be to Jesus Christ! Glory forever!
 
Do you feel that your confessor is judging you outside of the sacrament? If so, this is surely not the case. Please remember that your priest is fully trained and presumably has heard many confessions, hopefully from all of the other members of your parish, and will not let your confession influence his opinion of you.

A practical, short term, solution to your feeling of discomfort is to go to a different parish to receive the Sacrament of Penance. I expect many people will disagree with my possible solution, but I think you need to start to feel comfortable with the sacrament. Once you feel comfortable, you will be able to fully experience the sacrament in your home parish. :gopray:
 
Bud Stewart:
A practical, short term, solution to your feeling of discomfort is to go to a different parish to receive the Sacrament of Penance. I expect many people will disagree with my possible solution, but I think you need to start to feel comfortable with the sacrament. Once you feel comfortable, you will be able to fully experience the sacrament in your home parish. :gopray:
I agree w/ Bud and think you should probably go to another parish to a priest who doesn’t know you…not because you have to fear that your parish priest is judging you, etc. but where you are new to this, it can make you feel vulnerable. (I’m also a convert) I go once a month usually to the same priest. It’s good if they get to know you and where you’re coming from. I always go into the confessional not face-to-face…adds something more to the reverence of the Sacrament for me at least.🙂
 
Dear Monica,
I agree, it sounds like it might be a good idea going to a different priest for a while, as it will make the possiblity of embarrassment less.

Also, I find that the more thourough examination of my conscience I make and the more remorse and anguish I feel for my sins, the more relief I feel. I’ll pray for a long time for clarification on why I sinned, for many days. Be brutally honest with yourself and throw your pride out the window.

Also, I don’t know about you but I always confess behind the screen.
 
monica rose:
I have yet to experience any good feelings
Just a quick note of caution here. The sacraments we receive don’t always give us a “good feeling.” Just as we are not aware of the many graces God provides for us each day, or the number of times someone in heaven intercedes for us, or how often our guardian angel protects us each day, so also we are not often “in tune” with the graces we receive from the sacraments. Doesn’t mean they aren’t there, doesn’t mean it didn’t work, just emphasizes our human nature, I think.

We all experience in our spiritual journies times of great joy, times of great sorrow, times of dryness or doubt. It’s much like a relationship with a family member or spouse. Sometimes we “feel” great love for them, sometimes that love has to be a choice. But the love is still there.

I don’t feel like I’m getting the point across. Maybe I’m too tired tonight. Am I making any sense? :confused:
 
Monica, I understand your reticence. I, too, prefer to go to a priest I don’t know. My friends understand this. Any priest will tell you that he does not remember the sins he absolves, but I’m more comfortable with someone with who I am not friendly. I think it’s our human nature. You’ve been given good advice on this thread. Try it & see. Report back to us! 😛
 
Monica,

As a young cradle Catholic I always felt like I had to go to confession. And to be honest, it was something that I never really enjoyed. However as I got older, I found that the “good feeling” comes on Sunday morning after having gone to confession on Saturday night. Then I can say to my Lord before I receive Him, that although I am unworthy, I have done my best to be a clean tabernacle for Him.
When we feel like we have to do something, it eventually becomes work (and for me at least work is a struggle). However, when we struggle towards something more wonderful, it helps us to remain joyful. So rather than looking for the feeling after confession, try looking at Confession coupled with Communion. I hope that helps.

I look at Confession as the season of Lent before the Celebration of Easter (Communion).
 
I focus on the fact that it isn’t about the priest.

Before confession, during my examination of conscience, I am remorseful to God. In confession I am confessing my sins before God (the priest is merely the instrument of His forgiveness). I am talking to God, so to speak, and although it is the priest who replies, he is speaking on behalf of God.

After confession, I contemplate the fact that something real and substantive has taken place. I have not merely fulfilled my obligation, rather God (through His priest) has literally removed those sins from me.

The immediate feeling is good only because I know I have been cleansed. But more times than not, tears come to my eyes (I get emotional just describing this now), because I am in absolute awe at the endless mercy God shows us. How many times can I confess the same sins, yet God always forgives me, if my remorse is real and I again commit to avoiding those sins in the future.

In any new situation you are bound to be distracted by the environment. But as you become more comfortable in the environment, you will be able to focus on what is taking place in that environment. Then you will realize the peace that follows.
 
If you are going to confession face-to-face to the same priest who received you into the church and confirmed you, I can see where you might find this uncomfortable. I’d recommend using a confessional or behind the screen, and for your own anonymity maybe going to a different parish or a different priest for confession.

JimG
 
Monica Rose I too am new to the Catholic Church ( Feb 14, 2004 ) and have had the same experience, however I want to share this: My confession experience 2 weeks ago was all we’d hoped for and thought it could be when we thought about it before our conversions. This was maybe my 8th confession, but the first time I’d had this particular priest :eek: he was so reverent and sensitive to my humility. I didn’t hold anything back in that confessional and the tears were streaming down my face. He was so tuned into my pain and I could tell He was sincerely desiring to help me and lift my burdens from my heart. It was the greatest experience. It can and will happen for you too. I still struggle with admitting my faults outloud to another person because I’m embarrassed at my weakness ( this has always been the part of myself I don’t want others to see or know about… ) but that experience has given me much more confidence to do it.

I have also gone to a different parish for confession from time to time and that has helped me to be more open as well. :angel1: God has given us so many ways to receive His grace.
 
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Didi:
Just a quick note of caution here. The sacraments we receive don’t always give us a “good feeling.” Just as we are not aware of the many graces God provides for us each day, or the number of times someone in heaven intercedes for us, or how often our guardian angel protects us each day, so also we are not often “in tune” with the graces we receive from the sacraments. Doesn’t mean they aren’t there, doesn’t mean it didn’t work, just emphasizes our human nature, I think.

We all experience in our spiritual journies times of great joy, times of great sorrow, times of dryness or doubt. It’s much like a relationship with a family member or spouse. Sometimes we “feel” great love for them, sometimes that love has to be a choice. But the love is still there.

I don’t feel like I’m getting the point across. Maybe I’m too tired tonight. Am I making any sense? :confused:
I think that you made your point well. I sometimes feel very little when I go to Confession. Of course I am not Catholic because of my feelings they change all the time, truth however stays the same. I will say this when we get to Heaven and take a quick looks back the grace recived from confession will be a very bright spot indeed.
 
Desert Dweller:
Monica,

As a young cradle Catholic I always felt like I had to go to confession. And to be honest, it was something that I never really enjoyed. However as I got older, I found that the “good feeling” comes on Sunday morning after having gone to confession on Saturday night. Then I can say to my Lord before I receive Him, that although I am unworthy, I have done my best to be a clean tabernacle for Him.
When we feel like we have to do something, it eventually becomes work (and for me at least work is a struggle). However, when we struggle towards something more wonderful, it helps us to remain joyful. So rather than looking for the feeling after confession, try looking at Confession coupled with Communion. I hope that helps.

I look at Confession as the season of Lent before the Celebration of Easter (Communion).
Oh Yes…I agree, I have found the same thing…I’ve done my best to be a clean tabernacle for Jesus and then receive Communion. It’s very true.
 
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Didi:
Just a quick note of caution here. The sacraments we receive don’t always give us a “good feeling.” Just as we are not aware of the many graces God provides for us each day, or the number of times someone in heaven intercedes for us, or how often our guardian angel protects us each day, so also we are not often “in tune” with the graces we receive from the sacraments. Doesn’t mean they aren’t there, doesn’t mean it didn’t work, just emphasizes our human nature, I think.

We all experience in our spiritual journies times of great joy, times of great sorrow, times of dryness or doubt. It’s much like a relationship with a family member or spouse. Sometimes we “feel” great love for them, sometimes that love has to be a choice. But the love is still there.

I don’t feel like I’m getting the point across. Maybe I’m too tired tonight. Am I making any sense? :confused:
Didi, thanks for your insight. I thought about your comments all day yesterday and I think you’re right. We shouldn’t judge an outcome by our immediate emotional response.
 
Chris W:
I focus on the fact that it isn’t about the priest.

Before confession, during my examination of conscience, I am remorseful to God. In confession I am confessing my sins before God (the priest is merely the instrument of His forgiveness). I am talking to God, so to speak, and although it is the priest who replies, he is speaking on behalf of God.

After confession, I contemplate the fact that something real and substantive has taken place. I have not merely fulfilled my obligation, rather God (through His priest) has literally removed those sins from me.

The immediate feeling is good only because I know I have been cleansed. But more times than not, tears come to my eyes (I get emotional just describing this now), because I am in absolute awe at the endless mercy God shows us. How many times can I confess the same sins, yet God always forgives me, if my remorse is real and I again commit to avoiding those sins in the future.

In any new situation you are bound to be distracted by the environment. But as you become more comfortable in the environment, you will be able to focus on what is taking place in that environment. Then you will realize the peace that follows.
 
monica rose:
When I’m confessing I’m in such a nervous state and perhaps focusing to much on being nervous and how I appear to him, than on really being remorseful.

I agree that I am distracted by this enviroment and hopefully with time will be able to focus on what is taking place in the confessional.
After all, I confess that, " I believe in the in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins…
I do! I do!
 
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