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CHN Community Responds

CHNetwork Community Responds: What Do You Recall About Your First Confession?

October 7, 2016 6 Comments


This week, we asked our readers and members about their first experience of the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  Some of you recounted the fear you had of Confession as a child; others were well into their adulthood with decades of life to reflect upon.  But despite all the awkwardness, embarrassment, and nervousness you related, all of you expressed how overwhelmingly grateful you were for God’s mercy in this special sacrament.  Here’s a sampling of your responses:


“I remember the night before. I was 30 years old, sitting in my room trying to memorize the Act of Contrition while my wife watched (Law and Order) SVU. I thought the prayer was beautiful, and wanted to know it.  I looked at my wife and said I was going to pray it out loud, to see if I missed anything. Right as I started praying it, the detective on TV knelt down and prayed the words at the same time.  It was written into the episode, because he was investigating a minister. My wife and I just looked at each other. What are the odds?”

Mike, via Facebook


“My first confession was about a week before I entered the Church. I was 39 years old and had a huge list, and I was dreading the embarrassment of confessing many things I was particularly ashamed of.  Plus, I couldn’t make the usual Confession time so I had to make an appointment with the priest… no option for anonymity! During the absolution and afterwards it was like a wind blew through me and I felt the love and mercy of God really strongly.  I absolutely dreaded it going in, and I still always dread it a bit when I go about once a month now, but I can really feel God using the sacrament to heal me and guide me and unite me to him. I never knew how much I was missing out on and I’m so grateful now for how Jesus reaches out to us through his priests in Confession.”

Jessa, CHNetwork Blog


“A lot of confusion?  I vaguely remember almost vomiting out my life’s story, at least the mortal sin parts of it, and finishing rather breathlessly.  I wasn’t afraid at all, and it was so good to just get it all off my plate.  At the end, Father said, ‘My word. Well you’ve done VERY well indeed for a first confession.’  LOL!  I hadn’t realized that he would be handing out compliments in the confessional.  It was so good to confess to someone face to face, in persona Christi.  I don’t mind going to confession at all now.”

Jennie Fraser, CHNetwork Community Forum Moderator


“My first Confession was 4 years ago in RCIA.  I am a former Protestant minister of 20 years, and I wasn’t used to confessing my sins in this way.  I was scared to death, shaking and could barely talk. The priest conducting confessions for my class was very patient and helped me through it.  Afterwards I felt more relieved and I felt like a heavy weight had been lifted from around my neck.  Never in my entire life have I ever felt so at peace as when I heard, ‘Your sins are forgiven.’  I never heard that in the Protestant church. It made a big difference to hear it rather than just assuming they are forgiven, as in the Protestant church I came from.  The Catholic Church has totally changed my life.  I have found true peace.”

Joshua, via Facebook


“My first confession was a disaster. One priest hearing the confessions of more than 90 children lined up alphabetically so Sister could check us off the list as we went…

It did get better over time.  My best and more memorable confession was quite some time ago now, but after a 22 year absence from this beautiful gift from God. I knew peace and joy and love in that moment of forgiveness.  I have experienced the same many times since then.”

Kathy, via Facebook


“I was a little shaky as I had been a pastor for many years, and always just confessed to the Lord directly.  The priest who heard my first confession was gentle, understanding and really just invited me to confess mortal sins which he explained in a categorial manner- a lot in over fifty years.  The absolution seemed to have a deep cleansing effect and gave me a spiritual new start. I still find the Sacrament of Reconcilliation a very precious and holy gift on my spiritual journey.”

David, CHNetwork Community Forum


What about you?  What do you remember about your first Confession?  Or, if you’re preparing for one, what questions do you have about how to approach the sacrament?  Please share in the comments, and be sure to check out our Forum for more great conversations and community support from our members!

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