Confession with an RC Priest: Answer to a question
- Holy Confession is one of the holy sacraments of the church.�The confessor feels the pain and heaviness in his/her heart and empty out all the acts and omissions of sin and get cleansed enough to receive the blood and body of Jesus.� Otherwise the body and blood would result in the destruction of the receiver; as we narrate during the procession of the holy mysteries. Priests administering the confession accepts all the wrong doings of the confessor in to himself and bring it all to the holy throne of God (thronose) and empty it before God.� The priest is the ambassador of God in the process.� The priest also gives counseling and guidance for the spiritual growth of the confessor.
In our orthodox church we made a decision in the 13th�or 14th�century that unmarried priests shall not hear confession of female believers who are not children or elderly.� Unmarried priests are not allowed to be parish vicars either.� But we see a lot of examples to the opposite.�
Maphriono Eldo Baselius came to Kothamangalam because of the forced conversion of jacobite Christians to Catholicism. Any Syrian orthodox Christian who has any loyalty to their faith would not allow the believer to go for confession before catholic priests.� Any Knanaya Christian who is aware of the contributions of their fore-fathers like Itty- Thommen kathanar would not let it happen either.
For the above two reasons, I am sure that none of our prelates would allow such things.� Our prelates are all well-versed in these subjects.� They are all highly qualified and selected by believing association members and consecrated by Holy Father.
There was a joint declaration by the Patriarch of the East and the Patriarch of the West to receive holy sacraments from either church when the other is not possibly available.� My understanding is that this is only for exceptional situations.
Dn. Monsy Manamalethu Jacob
Dear Monsy Jacob Chemmachen,
I read many of your articles published in the public forum and that helped me to learn more about Lord.� May I ask you�a question about our faith.
Recently I heard that even one of our high-priest encouraged a batch of people to go and confess their sins to Roman Catholic priest. I am aware that our Holy Father made some arrangements with Pope in some areas.�My question is, as a Syrian Orthodox Christian, can I confess my sins to a Catholic priest? Is that a right thing to do? If not, why...??
It would be great if you could help me to understand the basics of Syrian Orthodox faith.
Thank you very much Chemmachen