Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
I'm an inquirer of an RC background, currently living in Russia (again) as of yesterday.
That inquiry is still ongoing, up and down; there are moments when I feel as though I am certain to take the leap to Orthodoxy, and others when I am not. The road has been marked with a lot of awakening, but also with a lot of hardship, most of which is due to my own spiritually immature reactions to my confusion.
One major issue I am now continuously running into is confession: I absolutely believe in the importance of the sacrament, from either an RC or OC standpoint, and currently find myself unsure what to do about it. Of course, as I'm not even officially an Orthodox catechumen, let alone chrismated, full sacramental penance with an Orthodox priest is out of the question, but on the flipside, as I have come to doubt my Roman Catholic faith in favor of Orthodoxy, I cannot, in good conscience, make a good confession in my own church. This leaves me wondering where to go when I feel the need to repent in a deep way, and has led me into that nasty trap of presumption, and feeling that once I've already sinned, I may as well let it all go. Of course this is not right, but I have always used the sacrament of penance to help me from spiraling out of control, and to bring me closer to God in a more effective way than anything I know of.
Any thoughts/suggestions? For all of its quirks, I find the input and personalities on this board to be very helpful.
Confession/Reconciliation is a Sacrament/Divine Mystery. These are not matters of our own human wills and intentions, but rather purely divine gifts from God to us. Even if we agree, it is God who invites, facilitates and brings us in and through the Divine Mysteries, from Baptism through Communion, even Confession and Marriage. God chooses, we respond. God will invite you into Confession in His time, and you must be receptive to respond accordingly. That being said, what myself personally did and what I advice you to do is to continue to pray earnestly for God to reveal and to effect His Will in your life, and to bring you where He Wills it. Pray the confessionary prayers and repentance prayers, confess your sins to God in sincerity and prayer, pray for forgiveness, search in your heart and soul for absolution, and surely then God in His Mercy will bring you to it in His own special Time. I myself did not have a Father-Confessor for my first 5 years in Orthodoxy, and it has radically changed my life forever for the better to have the gift of one now, who absolve my sins, console my heart, exorcise my demons, and keep my head straight. I never understood the full value of Confession until God brought me to it, and prayer was the guiding light steadily in that direction. A Father-Confessor in Orthodox is WAAAY more serious a relationship than the anonymous confessions of the Roman Catholic traditions, and as such it takes a bit more time and persevering prayerful effort to build such a relationship through God's Grace.