Too Frequent Confession
Mortal Vs. Venial Sin
Mortal Sin Vs. Venial Sin
How Often To Go To Confession
How Often Should You Go To Confession?
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Question / Issue:
"Is it okay to go to
Confession more than once a week? I've been told by a priest that it is not
recommended. If this is true, do you know why? I myself go whenever I feel a
need, whether it be twice a week or whatever. I'm very concerned about this
because I'm wondering if it is possible that this is an offense."
Answer / Resources:
[click link(s) below, as applicable]
If a priest has
advised you that it is not recommended to go to Confession more than once a
week, you should pay attention to what he says. Keep in mind that priests act in
Christ's name and with His authority. To learn the specific reason, it would be
good to ask the priest directly. One reason could be that frequent confession
may be due to (or lead to) scruples. Frequent confession is good, but "overly
frequent" confession might be the result of a flawed understanding regarding
mortal vs. venial sins or may perhaps be due to other errors, uncertainties,
doubts... Certainly one should go to Confession whenever one has a mortal sin
to confess (even if more than once a week), but – speaking generally –
people who go to Confession frequently and with sincerity are probably less
likely to commit very frequent mortal sins, especially since part of Confession
is a firm resolve not to commit future sin.
You said you go to
Confession whenever you "feel a need", but this might present a problem.
Confession isn't about a "feeling" – Confession is about actual, real sin that
has been committed. Did you commit a mortal sin or not? If so, you should go to
Confession. If not, you do not need to go (except as required by the Church –
e.g. at least once a year minimum, although more frequent Confession is
Although I couldn't
say for sure, I would tend to doubt that you have committed an "offense" by
going so frequently. However if your confessor has told you not to go so
frequently or if you went so frequently out of despair or there is some other
issue, it is possible that there was an "offense". However, we are only
laypeople, so we can't determine whether or not you have committed any such
"offense". Only a priest – who is vested with authority by Christ – can assist
My gut reaction to
your inquiry concerns the issue of scruples. If this applies to you (or might
apply to you), I would strongly suggest you meet privately with a good priest
outside of Confession so that he can assist you with this matter. Even if this doesn't
apply to you, a meeting with a good priest outside of Confession can help you
better determine when Confession is truly required. He might also suggest a
general interval for Confession based on your particular situation (maybe
monthly or weekly when there are no serious sins to confess). In either case, be
sure to select a very good priest – and one that you really trust. If the issue
involves scruples, you will 'really need' to follow his instructions, so be sure
you carefully select a very good priest that you trust and that will give you
Lastly, we have some
information on Confession that you might find helpful. It can be found
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