So, one of the things we accomplished on the retreat on Saturday was our First Holy Confession.
I was, sadly, disapointed with the whole thing. The priest, Fr. A, is very nice, and I did what I was instructed to do. I went in, and talked about 'what was bothering me, what weighed on my mind'. I recited the Act of Contrition, I was given absolution, and Penance, and that was that.
People came out of the room crying, clearly deeply moved by whatever happened in there. All leading up to it, the people already in the Church would talk about how a weight is lifted. Eh. Perfectly honest? I don't feel it. I don't feel any different, I didn't then, I don't now. Perhaps it's because it wasn't the confession I was expecting? I wanted to go in there, and confess to the priest, acting as Christ, all the wrongs that I could remember. To list them, to acknowledge that I did wrong, I know I did wrong, and I am asking for forgiveness for those wrongs.
Like so many other things, this, I feel, is really something done for our benefit. God knows what you've done, better even than you. It's the process of reflection, of acknowledgement and repentance that is important for us. But the way we were told to do confession? I didn't need to tell the priest that I lied, or stole, that I've blasphemed, or that I worshiped other gods. Nothing. Just...what's bothering you. And none of those things are bothering me. I've done them, I know they're wrong, God knows, I've acknowledged them privately, and I pray for guidance away from repeating those mistakes.
I think confession can be great, as evidenced by all those people who clearly got something hugely meaningful out of it. I wish it had meant more to me. I *wanted* it to mean more. But it didn't. It was like having a conversation with someone I like, who is then sworn to secrecy. I didn't...I didn't get that feeling of *sacredness* that I was expecting. That *lift* when it was over, and I was told that my sins were forgiven.
As I jokingly told someone else, "Given all the other reactions, I'm afraid I may just be spiritually deficient."