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10/10/2010

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Chris Arnold

I am hoping to promote Confession at the parish where I am. It's not a bad idea to have your confessor be someone other than your parish priest, which is admittedly easier in cities.

Clay Towles

In the Anglican faith, we have placed a premium on corporate worship. Nearly everything we do is in community and in communion.

It's in this spirit that I am cautious when thinking of the idea of instituting confession in the parish. That is to say, surely there are radical instances where it is necessary. There always are and always will be so I would never promote the idea of it being banished.

With that being said, everything we do within the confines of the Eucharist and daily office point us toward participating the in the life of God. Confession belongs in a place with your brothers and sisters coming together to ask God's grace and forgiveness. It's in that community that we live into God.

Private confession removes us from the confines of participating in God and removes us from him. If we are to truly be participating in God, in community, then we need to bring all of ourselves to that participation. Shedding the sinful and shameful part of you in private, while it might help bring some piece of mind, removes your vulnerability as you join in the communities worship of God. We all sin, we all confess, we all are forgiven, and we all forgive. Except in the rarest and most extreme of cases, we should do this together, in the midst of the Merciful Father.

Tim Sean

Clay, I think I eventually will land in the vicinity of your way of thinking about this. I mean, look at text from James -- confess your sins to "one another" is a far cry from developing a very institutionalized way private meeting.

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