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Re: “Mea Culpa

The Church doesn't regard confessions that are not done in person as valid. So this use of technology (the same goes for using a telephone, text message, etc.) not only doesn't follow the Catholic norm, but also isn't legitimate. Why? It's one of the seven sacraments, and like the other six, it requires a person's physical presence to receive the sanctifying graces that come with it.

The convenience of this kind of confession aside, I think it's comforting to know that some things can never be replaced with a machine. Sins are and will always be absolved by a priest in persona Christi. Although the Second Vatican Council never said anything about de-emphasizing the importance of sacramental reconciliation (sadly, many clergy seem to be under this impression as well), it still is an critical part of the faith.

Another practical benefit is that the seal of confession is much less likely to ever be broken without a paper trail. A priest is bound by pains of excommunication to never repeat anything said to others. Can you imagine the awful paper trail of people's wrongdoings all logged in one place? Now that would be hell.

Posted by Leong, Lancelote on 05/16/2009 at 10:30 PM

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