Catholic Confession: Yes, You Need to Go

This is a big one. Confession. I have to be honest, I was pretty stinkin’ scared the first time I went to confession. I had mortal sins on my soul—many, many sins totaling up to 26 years. So, when I said that I really wasn’t catechized, and I wasn’t practicing my religion, I meant it. I hadn’t been to confession for 26 years. I didn’t really know what the Mass was, didn’t think about the Eucharist, didn’t even really know what that was—certainly not the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Lord!

So for me, confession was something that was pretty scary and something that I didn’t even know how to do. We went through this line thing when I was in CCD, so I didn’t even know where the confessionals were, what they looked like, what the process was. So it’s really funny. Again, you can relive it in my book when you have the chance to read it. I’m also doing an audiobook, so if you want me to tell the story to you, it’s pretty hysterical.

But bottom line is this: I came out of there floating! The relief I felt was profound, and it dawned on me: even if I just believe my faith by that smidge, that faith of a mustard seed, I’m going to confession. Do I really want to risk spending the rest of eternity in hell because of the mortal sins on my soul? Yeah, I don’t think so. I’m going to go ahead and go, right? I mean why not? If there’s at least a chance that confession could purify my soul and make me ready for heaven, I’m going! And now that, five years later, I am a pretty devout Catholic, I love confession.

You should read the Examination of Conscience. Go to my website. I think I’m going to put links on the top and the bottom here for you, so that you can check out what you’re supposed to do beforehand, how you go through your penance process, and what you’re supposed to do afterwards.

Because my first time, I didn’t know. I winged it, pretty much, but I’m really glad I went. So anyway, bottom line, once I started understanding the Catholic faith and started practicing and understanding how important it was to be in a state of grace to accept the Eucharist, the Body and Blood, every time I would go to Mass—which recently has been daily—I need to make sure that I’m in a state of grace, so I need to go to confession and confess all my sins.

I don’t have the mortal sins on my soul, but I have a lot of things that I’m not doing that I should be doing—meaning trusting in God one hundred percent—because I still worry, and I still struggle with anxiety. So I give it up, and I give all my suffering to Him. It’s been a long way for me to get there. Trust me. Five years ago, I would’ve thought, “What in the heck is that chick talking about? I have no idea what’s going on!” So that’s what I’m here for is to kind of help bridge the gap at the end of the day.

But when you do go through the process of confession, the experience of a fresh clean slate—renewed, you know—you just walk out of there. You’re clean! You can die, get hit by a car… Sorry, but you get hit by that proverbial bus as you’re coming right out of the church, and you are on your way to heaven. I mean you haven’t even had a chance to think about a sin, yet, walking out of that church. Hopefully you’ve done your penance right before you walk out of that church, too. I always like to do that.

But what I think is funny is that people that haven’t been to confession in a long time think it’s automatically associated with the worst sins, and that people are going to look at them funny when they’re in line and think, “What did he (or she) do?” and . . . not even close.

I’m in line all the time. There are people who are practicing Catholics that go to confession all the time. It’s part of the faith. So we expect that you should go, and you should not feel uncomfortable going. And quite frankly, if you don’t know how to do it, just go on in and say, “Hey, Father, it’s been, you know, 26 years since I’ve been to my last confession. I don’t even know what the heck I’m doing, but I’m here. Can you help me?” And he’ll walk you through it. It’s amazing.

So my point here, looking at you through this camera lens, is to say, “Why not go do it—especially if you have mortal sins?” Go Google mortal sins; I’ll have that also on the confession list, along with the Examination of Conscience and other things that you’re supposed to think about before you go in there, to help you make the most of it.

But know that you should at least be going once a year—once a month, at least. It’s like cleaning your car out as Matthew Kelly says when he compares the two. He goes through the story, and it’s a funny one. I’ll tell you about that one later.

But please do not be afraid, and know that the feeling that you come out with on the other side is indescribable. And it’s something that I would strongly recommend to anybody. Even if you don’t have mortal sins on your soul, read through the Examination of Conscience, go to confession, and see how the grace of God will start to shower down on you. I just can’t say it any other way. But that’s the first start, because then you can receive the Lord in Mass.

So that’s your first step. Go to confession. Send me an email, get into the community, and get some additional support. Again, like I said, I went after 26 years. Send me a note. You want some help? You want me to talk to you? I’ll certainly have a conversation with you. Anything to get you back to that sacrament, because it’s phenomenal when you go.

Okay, this was a little longer than just a quick vlog, but it’s that important. So I wanted to spend that extra time. Just go. You will not regret it. It’s way better than that exercise that you didn’t want to do that, when you did it, made you feel great—and so happy that you did it. Take that and multiply it by, like, a gazillion—that feeling of a clean, fresh soul. Wow! Phenomenal, right? Go do it. Let me know how it goes. God bless.

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Kendra Von Esh

Kendra Von Esh is a Speaker, Faith Coach, and Author who has a passion to help others to deepen their relationship with God and the Catholic Faith.