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S/O How often do you go to Confession?

post #1 of 30
Thread Starter 
This is a spin-off of the "how often do you receive Communion?" thread. I guess this is pretty much only for Orthodox Christians and Latin & Eastern Rite Catholics, although I think sometimes Anglicans and Lutherans have some form of Confession. We're not talking general confession either - we're talking you one-on-one with your priest.

I'm Orthodox, and for us, it really depends on your jurisdiction, as well as diocesan bishop/priest. I'm OCA (Orthodox Church in America, for the non-Orthodox here) and if you receive Communion pretty much every week, it's recommended you go to Confession once a month. Of course, you can go more often if you feel the need.

OCA Encyclical on Confession and Communion:
http://www.oca.org/DOCencyclical.asp?SID=12&ID=3

There's a service of general confession described in the link - which would be followed by everyone doing private confession - but I don't think it's done in a whole lot of Orthodox parishes.

I remember growing up Catholic in the Archdiocese of Detroit that the Catholic service of general confession was pretty much abused in my home parish (I went to 8th grade and high school in a different parish). It was held one Friday during Lent. I *never* knew my parents to go to private Confession. Ever. Once I did my first private Confession in 4th or 5th grade, I didn't go to private Confession again until I went to Catholic school in 8th grade. Then, you went during Advent and Lent as a school thing. I'm told that the Catholic general confession service was really only meant for a mass amount of men going off to war, that sort of thing.

Some Orthodox only go to Confession during Lent - that's the bare minimum. My parish is small, about 175 members, along with a good bunch who come regularly but aren't members. My priest *will* contact you if you don't come for Confession during Lent - and these folks will still expect to receive Communion on Pascha (Easter) even without Confession - there are a few folks who we don't see much during the year, aside from Holy Week, Pascha, Christmas. I can't imagine being on the receiving end of that phone call! Most Orthodox parishes tend towards being smaller - not the 3000 people that the Catholic parish I grew up in had - and that was considered to be a *smaller* parish!

How often are Catholics instructed to go to Confession these days?
post #2 of 30
We have a new priest who encourages confession/reconciliation. We have twice yearly group sessions (during Advent and Lent) and drop-in is available twice a month.

I usually go to the group sessions and one other time during the year. It's not that I'm perfect, but there just isn't a lot that comes up that I feel the need to talk to a priest about. For me, what I confess is stuff that makes me unable to forgive myself, and thus alienates me from god.

Afterwards, I always feel so much better. It's a wonderful sacrament.
post #3 of 30
nak...

i'm roman catholic. ccc 1457 tells us that we must go at least once a year. however, if one commits a mortal sin, then s/he should confess asap. more to say, but typing one-handed stinks!!
post #4 of 30
Once a year is the bare minimum for Latin Rite Catholics but I think most conservative parishes would suggest once a month to 6 weeks a good frequency for the average good standing Catholic. Obviously more if you need it and most parishes have weekly Confession hours and many priests are available by appointment if you need it mid-week or can't make Saturday times.

I really like the tradition of having the same confessor for prolonged periods but I can't imagine getting a phone call lol. Latin Rite Catholics often choose their confessor deliberately so it may or may not be their regular parish priest, and sometimes people (myself included, I admit) will go to a different priest/parish to confess sins they don't want to to confess to the same priest they see every week at church. It's not a very humble thing to do.

And the question was how often do I go -- well it's been tricky with the baby but I've been trying for every 2-3 months. I've had a little bit of stress over it in the past couple years from some bad experiences. I know priests are human too so I'm trying not to worry but I have a little anxiety about going or I'd got a lot more often.
post #5 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by xekomaya View Post

I really like the tradition of having the same confessor for prolonged periods but I can't imagine getting a phone call lol. Latin Rite Catholics often choose their confessor deliberately so it may or may not be their regular parish priest, and sometimes people (myself included, I admit) will go to a different priest/parish to confess sins they don't want to to confess to the same priest they see every week at church. It's not a very humble thing to do.
Well, my priest will put a notice in the bulletin and do his darndest to *not* make that phone call, lol. I can't imagine getting that phone call either. Among the Orthodox, your parish priest is often your spiritual father/confessor, but not always. Sometimes people go to the priest at another nearby parish for Confession, but let their parish priest know they've been to Confession - and I suspect the parish priest would check with the other priest (the one hearing the Confession) to make sure, if he had any doubts.

I think the relationship is different with my priest simply because there is a lower ratio of parishioners to priest.
post #6 of 30
not often enough.

we have had preist issues though (as in no priest)

we have a new priest though and he does it immidiately following vespers which makes it easier (i have issues making and keeping appointments). i think most people do it once a year though.
post #7 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tradd View Post

I think the relationship is different with my priest simply because there is a lower ratio of parishioners to priest.
I wish that were the case. My parish is SMALL and we have 2 priests, and we share a lot with another church, separate parish, with 2-3 more priests. I think it's an identity issue but that's a whole 'nother thread
post #8 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lilyka View Post
not often enough.

we have had priest issues though (as in no priest)

we have a new priest though and he does it immediately following vespers which makes it easier (i have issues making and keeping appointments). i think most people do it once a year though.
Mine does it immediately after Saturday Vespers, as well. If you get there very early, you might be able to do it beforehand, as someone did last night.

During Great Lent, Fr. will be at the church and available to hear Confessions at least 30-45 minutes before the Presanctified Liturgies on Wednesday evenings, as well as any other extra Lenten services (such as Friday evening Vespers). I just went last night as I'm on a every monthly thing. My priest says four times yearly - pretty much during the four fasts - is the minimum if you're taking Communion regularly. However, I came from the Antiochians and you have to go every month. So, I got into the every month habit. When I switched parishes early last year I experimented with going every 6-8 weeks for a while, but I need to go more often for my spiritual health. In fact, when I told Fr. this last night - that once a month is much better for me - he said he'll now expect if of me. Will he call me up? No. Since I'm at church all the time and he even leaves me necessary paperwork for something I'm doing on "my" music stand in the choir area.
post #9 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by xekomaya View Post
I think it's an identity issue but that's a whole 'nother thread
Identity issues?
post #10 of 30
Yeah, I guess that's the phrasing of a writer I particularly like, George Wiegel. He's written some good books about problems that have resulted from our general roman catholic identity crisis following the Vatican II council. How some of it is 'normal' following the councils when people don't really understand the church anymore, and part of this particular council seemingly redefined the roll of clergy and left a general crisis of priestly identity.

I'll never explain it as well as he has, an definitely not in one paragraph, but maybe that made a little sense?
post #11 of 30
Personally, I've never gone to a priest for confession. However, since the OP mentioned Anglicans, I thought I'd mention that my former parish (part of the Anglican Mission in the Americas) offers drop-in confession with clergy on Good Friday and ... one other day, but I can't think of which one, off hand. During Advent, I suspect.

At each Sunday service, the celebrant also encourages confession to laypeople (small group members, prayer partners, lay ministers, etc.) on a regular basis. Prayer ministers (and often members of clergy as well) are available for intersession and confession during every service.
post #12 of 30
I try to confess to one-on-one to God as often as possible.

I do have a confessor, but he isn't a priest.
post #13 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by spero View Post
I try to confess to one-on-one to God as often as possible.

I do have a confessor, but he isn't a priest.

We're talking sacramental Confession here.
post #14 of 30
Confession to God is Sacramental. Technically, the Rite doesn't produce the Sacrament. Not to mention, the original rite in the "traditional" church (or whatever you want to call it) was NOT private confession through a priest.


ETA: The RC church practiced general confession & penitence until the St. Patrick (who, btw, was neither Irish nor Roman Catholic) and the influence of Celtic Christianity in Ireland caused the RC church to adopt the rite of private confession that is standard today.

Different Rite, same Sacrament.
post #15 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by spero View Post
Confession to God is Sacramental. Technically, the Rite doesn't produce the Sacrament.


Quote:
ETA: The RC church practiced general confession & penitence until the St. Patrick (who, btw, was neither Irish nor Roman Catholic) and the influence of Celtic Christianity in Ireland caused the RC church to adopt the rite of private confession that is standard today.

Different Rite, same Sacrament.

I know he wasn't Irish... but not Catholic?
post #16 of 30
I try to go once a month. I usually take her with me because I want to instil the beauty of the Sacrament in my daughter.
post #17 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by PatienceAndLove View Post





I know he wasn't Irish... but not Catholic?
Rites are the outward (physical) celebration of Sacraments which have already taken place inwardly (spiritually). Sacraments come from God's grace and a rite never produces a Sacrament.

St. Patrick was a Celtic Christian, not a Roman Catholic.

Quote:
"The early Irish Christianity planted in Ireland by Patrick is much more joyful and celebratory [than its Roman predecessor] in the way it approaches the natural world. It is really not a theology of sin but of the goodness of creation, and it really is intensely incarnational."

And since it was the Irish monks who served as the bridge between classical Christianity and the Middle Ages, medieval Christianity tends to reflect the celebratory nature of Irish spirituality rather than the gloom and sin-centeredness of its classical predecessor.

http://www.americancatholic.org/Mess...7/feature1.asp
ps - He didn't chase the snakes out of Ireland, either.
post #18 of 30
That is it Spero!: I hereby challenge you to come to MY parish (St. Patrick's) in the heart of Tipperary Hill and try selling your wares on March 17th. :nana:

I *might* just save you from the drunken parishioners, since we've been friends for so long, but- I will certainly let them smite you first!
post #19 of 30
I was taught to try to go to confession every other week for the graces... now I shoot for every 4-6 weeks, unless I'm in mortal sin. Which is pretty much all the time lately
post #20 of 30
: Hey, I have enough Irish (and good sense) in me not to make a scene at St. Pat's on his day!

You bring the Killian's, I'll bring a snake.
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