Do you like spiritual direction in Confession?
#11
(05-17-2018, 10:52 PM)MagisterMusicae Wrote:
(05-17-2018, 01:43 PM)Dominicus Wrote:
(05-17-2018, 12:55 PM)gracemary5 Wrote: I do but never get it.

It seems priests these days can't wait to get out of the Church or something! They give us short homilies, short absolutions w/ no spiritual direction and

gee... We spent 95% of our lives outside Church so this is quite annoying to me... because that 95% of our time is used up being in the worldly world... where Satan rules

and wants to make *&% sure you know it!

While a priest can give you some short advice the confessional is not the place for spiritual direction. The homily is supposed to be short because ootherwise it distracts from the Mass. The absolution formula is of fixed length, if he's shortening it without reason then perhaps leave him a kindly written note explaining the issue. Otherwise tell the pastor and failing that, the bishop.

If you want spiritual direction then first make an appointment and secondly stop ptactically accusing priests of being servants of the devil just because they don't behave exactly as you want them to. Priests are extremely busy, they can't be at every parishioners beck and call.

The standard advice in traditional pastoral theology manuals is that the spiritual direction of women should happen in the confessional for the sake of propriety.

That can be misunderstood, however.

Spiritual direction should generally happen outside of normal confession times, not necessarily outside of the confessional box.

This is because it is supremely uncharitible to take any longer in the box than you need during the normal time, seeing as there may be a line of people who need confession, and if you blabber on unnecessarily, it means they will not be absolved, or not receive Communion, etc.

For most people, a quick advice on virtues to practice and how to avoid particular sins is sufficient spiritual direction. Since most do not practice the basic virtues to a high degree and remain in the beginnings of the purgative life, more extensive direction is not going to be helpful. Once they show progress, more may be useful and necessary.

I have shown much progress. I am not even going to Purgatory when I die, I'm sure--going straight through the Pearly Gates. So the priest should give me direction

just kidding (about that no Purgatory stuff)

but still... again this priest I go to doesn't say a thing.. about how to avoid the same sins. Tha'ts probably because he doesn't struggle w/ the same sins (for example, the "sin" of thinking that God is evil. Yeh, I have sometimes hd that thought... feeling.)
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#12
(05-18-2018, 05:24 PM)gracemary5 Wrote:
(05-17-2018, 09:36 PM)Florus Wrote:
(05-17-2018, 01:43 PM)Dominicus Wrote: The homily is supposed to be short because ootherwise it distracts from the Mass

Hey I don't wanna derail the thread but I just want to comment on this. 

That's not a fixed rule or practice, the length length of sermons has varied widely depending on time and culture. Many of the sermons of the fathers went on for a couple hours or more, St. Augustine is a prime example. In late antiquity there was a huge emphasis on the use of rhetoric to being people to God, as well as showing his glory.

Many missionary priests I've spoken to have commented on the very long (to us) length of sermons in other cultures where the Catholic community is in some ways more robust and central, like in certain places in Africa.

In our current western climate I'd agree that a preacher should keep it snappy due to the majority of people's attention spans and expectations, but it's not a rule.

thanks. I appreciate all you say except that last thing. Why should a priest kowtow to the worldly parishioners (which many of them are, ya know)? That is why they are worldly! They never hear a good LONG homily! 

we wonder why the world is so uncatholic and anti-Catholic???!!! No need to wonder

Why? For the reasons MM explained, it's not "kowtowing" to worldly parishioners, it's effective communication.

That's not why we are so worldly.
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#13
(05-18-2018, 05:37 PM)gracemary5 Wrote: but still... again this priest I go to doesn't say a thing.. about how to avoid the same sins. Tha'ts probably because he doesn't struggle w/ the same sins (for example, the "sin" of thinking that God is evil. Yeh, I have sometimes hd that thought... feeling.)

A priest is a spiritual physician. He has a duty not only to heal (absolution), but help the patient to do what is better so as to help cure the sickness, not just treat the effects. This is where advice comes in.

The problem is that when only one priest is hearing confessions on a Sunday, or right before Mass, and there is not some wide open time, there is usually a limit to the amount of time he can spend on a soul.

Just like it is better that an emergency room physician spend an hour ensuring the best treatment for a particular patient is good, but when there's just been a 50 car pileup, he's more doing triage and treat the most people in the limited time he has.

If you want direction, approach the priest independently of confession, ask if he can give you direction at a set time once a month, and arrange to meet in the confessional at that mutually convenient time. Then you can confess, and discuss for 10 minutes or so (spiritual direction with a woman should generally not be long, due to the need to avoid undue familiarity) your major problem, and get some advice.

Don't expect to get this at the normal confessional times, especially on a Sunday, Holy Day, or weekday Mass when there are others waiting. To expect that he give that time to you, but then perhaps not be able to do that with others is not just or charitable, however.
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#14
(05-18-2018, 12:21 PM)Justin Alphonsus Wrote: Another thing I am often irritated by, but this is probably due to my misunderstanding of the situation, is when there are other priests in the chapel who are not assisting at mass but who are not hearing confessions.  If there are two or three priests who are available to hear confessions, it would seem to me to make sense to have them hear confessions to help speed up to process. But, that is just me...

During Mass is actually not the time to be offering confessions.

In an ideal world there would be confessions before the Mass, and at scheduled times outside of Mass, but not during the Mass, for the simple reason that it means that either one is following Mass in a less than ideal way, or is preparing their confession in a less than ideal way. Worse, one may come to Sunday Mass and miss the sermon, or miss the Consecration, or some other important part of the Mass.

Now, given that at many traditional chapels, the faithful are coming from far away and do not have easy access to confessions during the weekdays, or not all could be confessed before Mass, it is a necessary "evil" that Confessions be heard during Mass.

But part of that stems from the failure of people to take confession seriously as well, and make it a priority. For instance one chapel where I went for a while, there were 6 priests stationed there. Once a week there were four priests hearing confessions for 90 minutes. Confessions were heard before every weekend Mass for at least 30 minutes by two priests. When Sunday rolled around, confessions were originally offered for nearly 60 minutes before Mass. Few came during the week, but there were lines throughout the two Masses on Sunday and even in between the two Mass. No one would come until about 20 minutes before the first Mass, despite the priest sitting in the box for over 30 minutes.

We need to take confession as seriously as every other Sacrament. It need to be prepared-for with the same diligence as Communion, Baptism or Confirmation. Reception of each should be preceded by preparation specific to that Sacrament. Sitting in the line at Church in silence is a good way to prepare. Trying to follow the Mass is not (at least not the ideal preparation for Confession).
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#15
(05-18-2018, 06:12 PM)Florus Wrote:
(05-18-2018, 05:24 PM)gracemary5 Wrote:
(05-17-2018, 09:36 PM)Florus Wrote:
(05-17-2018, 01:43 PM)Dominicus Wrote: The homily is supposed to be short because ootherwise it distracts from the Mass

Hey I don't wanna derail the thread but I just want to comment on this. 

That's not a fixed rule or practice, the length length of sermons has varied widely depending on time and culture. Many of the sermons of the fathers went on for a couple hours or more, St. Augustine is a prime example. In late antiquity there was a huge emphasis on the use of rhetoric to being people to God, as well as showing his glory.

Many missionary priests I've spoken to have commented on the very long (to us) length of sermons in other cultures where the Catholic community is in some ways more robust and central, like in certain places in Africa.

In our current western climate I'd agree that a preacher should keep it snappy due to the majority of people's attention spans and expectations, but it's not a rule.

thanks. I appreciate all you say except that last thing. Why should a priest kowtow to the worldly parishioners (which many of them are, ya know)? That is why they are worldly! They never hear a good LONG homily! 

we wonder why the world is so uncatholic and anti-Catholic???!!! No need to wonder

Why? For the reasons MM explained, it's not "kowtowing" to worldly parishioners, it's effective communication.

That's not why we are so worldly.

I don't get this answer.. but I do know that most Catholics NEED a long homily (assuming its a good one)
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#16
(05-19-2018, 02:02 AM)MagisterMusicae Wrote:
(05-18-2018, 05:37 PM)gracemary5 Wrote: but still... again this priest I go to doesn't say a thing.. about how to avoid the same sins. Tha'ts probably because he doesn't struggle w/ the same sins (for example, the "sin" of thinking that God is evil. Yeh, I have sometimes hd that thought... feeling.)

A priest is a spiritual physician. He has a duty not only to heal (absolution), but help the patient to do what is better so as to help cure the sickness, not just treat the effects. This is where advice comes in.

The problem is that when only one priest is hearing confessions on a Sunday, or right before Mass, and there is not some wide open time, there is usually a limit to the amount of time he can spend on a soul.

Just like it is better that an emergency room physician spend an hour ensuring the best treatment for a particular patient is good, but when there's just been a 50 car pileup, he's more doing triage and treat the most people in the limited time he has.

If you want direction, approach the priest independently of confession, ask if he can give you direction at a set time once a month, and arrange to meet in the confessional at that mutually convenient time. Then you can confess, and discuss for 10 minutes or so (spiritual direction with a woman should generally not be long, due to the need to avoid undue familiarity) your major problem, and get some advice.

Don't expect to get this at the normal confessional times, especially on a Sunday, Holy Day, or weekday Mass when there are others waiting. To expect that he give that time to you, but then perhaps not be able to do that with others is not just or charitable, however.

well, thanks for scolding me like a child. I always wanted to go back to childhood! :)

I already know it is selfish to take up too much of the priest's time! that's basic civility.. although not all Catholics seem to know this. I have waited and waited outside the confessional sometimes while someone goes on and on about who knows what.. I never really copped a resentment, to speak of, though bc I had no idea what pain that person was in... and egregious sin is the worst pain of all... the separation from our Lord that that causes..

anyway, I don't think I should schedule a time with the priest I like the best.. Again, he doesn't seem to say much for some reason... so that is not entirely helpful to either one of us, apparently
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#17
(05-19-2018, 01:53 PM)gracemary5 Wrote: I don't get this answer.. but I do know that most Catholics NEED a long homily (assuming its a good one)

All Catholics need the spiritual medicine which will best treat their maladies.

That is, generally speaking, not going to be a long sermon.

Were you not just complaining about someone going on and on ...
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