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To: RitaOK; wideawake
The view that the priest may not withhold absoluton is theologically incorrect, it and lacks pastoral charity. The confessor always has the authority to refuse absolution if he has reason to believe the confession is invalid. "Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them; whose sins you shall retain, they are retained."

When would a confession be invalid? When the penitent is not a baptized person; then the penitent is under an excommunication the lifting of which is reserved to the Bishop or the Apostolic See; when the penitent lacks awareness of the gravity of a sin; when he does not express remorse, or an intention of amendment.

"To acknowledge one’s sins… to recognise one as being a sinner, capable of sin and inclined to commit sin, is the essential first step in returning to God" (Pope John Paul II, Reconciliatio et Penitentia, (1984), n.13). Were it not possible to withhold absolution the very integrity of the act of Christian conversion would be undermined.

"God pardons nothing to those who pardon themselves everything," declared that saintly confessor, the Curé of Ars. Purporting to absolve an unrepentant penitent brings no one to this realisation. It will be a rare case, but when a person confesses a felony, requiring him to go to the police before absolution may be the only way to ascertain that he is actually repentant.

26 posted on 07/18/2012 9:11:45 AM PDT by Mrs. Don-o ("The first duty of intelligent men of our day is the restatement of the obvious." George Orwell)
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To: Mrs. Don-o; wideawake

Thank you.

The absolution, however, is not always, and in every circumstance, and in every case, dependent upon turning one’s self into authorities.

That was my point to wideawake. Absolution is given, under all the reasons you say, but does not require turning one’s self in to authorities in every circumstance.


39 posted on 07/18/2012 9:55:13 AM PDT by RitaOK (NO ROMNEY, NO COMPROMISE. NO WAY. NO HOW. NOT NOW. NOT EVER.)
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