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Confession question

A Xt3 Member asked at 4:29pm on August 14th 2017
Hello! Last Lent I started to take my faith more seriously. I confessed some past sins commited when I was very young, between 7 and 15 years old, that I didn't confessed before due to fear. I guess I had no idea they were sins when I commited it (specially when I was around 7-10yo I think I didn't even know what a sin was) or didn't understand very well my faith (specially in my teens), but what if I'm lessing my fault? I don't know anymore. I'm really not sure if they can be considered mortal or only venial. So, anyway, I confessed it at Lent, saying the cathegory of sin, and asked if the priest needed more details (I didn't said the exact name of each sin, only the type they belonged to). He said no, absolved me and said to me to move on with my life, forget it and be happy. But now I'm really not sure. Was I supposed to say the actual name of the sins, one by one? Since then, I'm always having scrupulous thoughts, spending long hours examining my conscience and trying to remember exactly how things happened, but more and more my discernement become more confused. I went to confession again and other priest said that I didn't need to reconfess it, that things were okay. But I'm still confused.
I'm trying to do things right this time, fix everything, and I'm really tired, sad and scared. Do you think am I being too scrupulous (or too lax)? Did I messed up my confession? Thanks in advance for the amazing idea of creating this webpage. Since at the moment I can't have access to a spiritual director, this forum is a blessing! I'm so glad I've found it. Maybe I'll find here some peace of mind until I can get to my next confession.

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Hi Maria, first of all, huge congratulations for your deepening in your faith. As priests hearing confessions, every now and then someone like you can confess sins they've thought of from the past, including, just like you did, sins committed when they weren't aware they were, or later, when they weren't fully aware of them as sins. And once the confessor understands the nature of the sin confessed, as your confessor did, he really doesn't want to go into further details about it.

I really think you should trust that priest making the right decision regarding your confession, and having absolved your sins encouraging you to make a new start with God's help. You know what? I think for all of us, the gift of God's mercy is so infinite, that it's hard for us to take it on board. Remember when Jesus said to the paralysed man left through the roof, 'your sins are forgiven' - the educated theologians present (rightly) said, 'who can forgive sins but God alone?' (Mk 2:7). In your confessions, you met God who is Love head on, so you have a right to say, 'God loves me immensely.'

By your courage and humility in confessing your sins, you brought such joy to heaven, and God rewards you with tons of love. And all you need to do after that is become a saint, by following St Thérèse of Lisieux's motto (I've shortened it a bit), over the last month of her life, 'to love you, Jesus, I have just now.' By trying to do God's will in each moment, and if not so well one moment, not worrying, just starting again in the next moment, you could become a saint over a weekend!

Very best, Fr Brendan
Xt3's Ask a Priest answered at 11:34pm on August 15th 2017 reply

I cannot even express how grateful I am for your words, Fr. Brendan.
Thanks for taking your time and your wisdom to help people like me, who are still immature in faith. I'll definitely think and contemplate a lot about what you've said and I'll carry this lesson to life, during my path.
Indeed, in my limited and imperfect view, it's really difficult to measure or understand the infinity of God's mercy. Until my next confession, I'll try to stay calm and focus on it, on God's grace and mercy. At the moment, I can't get in contact with a local spiritual director and you truly helped me in my struggle.
Again, huge thanks for providing such a wonderful place in which we can talk about our doubts to priests. It's a relief to know that I can count with it when in doubt. The internet is a powerful tool to evangelization!
A Xt3 Member replied at 12:02am on August 17th 2017 report reply

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