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Author Topic: When does a priest have the obligation to reveal a confession?  (Read 3144 times) Average Rating: 0
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yeshuaisiam
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« Reply #90 on: October 31, 2012, 12:23:25 PM »

What if you go to jail for unpaid traffic tickets? Is that necessary?

The New Testament is quite clear about Christians being obedient to the civil authorities, which would include paying for traffic tickets if issued. That being said, pointing out the inutility of a particular law does not equate disregard for civil law in general.

Most of us here are from America.  We do not have authorities, we have public servants.   This is a side issue however, from revealing confession.

Negative.  We have an authority: the law.  The "public servants" merely execute that law.  We are a nation of laws, not of men.

The statement was referencing humans, not laws.   Paul referenced humans not laws.   Those executing the laws in America are servants, not authorities.   Those creating laws are servants, not authorities.  America throws a crux in authoritarian type of laws.

The servant created laws are executed by servants.  We are a nation of people, who own our government.  This is clearly defined in numerous documents that incepted our country.  It really messes with Romans 13. 

How this deals with confession is that one would argue that since we are to submit to the "authorities" and their laws we are to turn ourselves in for repentance.

In America, we are free, and we don't have to submit to our servants, we are to submit to God.   If the servants don't know something happened, but a person has true repentance for a crime long ago, what right does a priest have to go turn them in to the cops when the canon forbids it?

The church has authority over the priest and his actions in the church.  The priest is bound to the canons that they SWORE to uphold during their ordination.  Even the OCA states no matter what the priest should not reveal a confession.

I don't see the logic in revealing a confession of something "has been past" that the person came to the priest in complete repentance about, and the priest turns around and states "turn yourself in or I will".
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« Reply #91 on: October 31, 2012, 12:39:43 PM »

What if you go to jail for unpaid traffic tickets? Is that necessary?

The New Testament is quite clear about Christians being obedient to the civil authorities, which would include paying for traffic tickets if issued. That being said, pointing out the inutility of a particular law does not equate disregard for civil law in general.

Most of us here are from America.  We do not have authorities, we have public servants.   This is a side issue however, from revealing confession.

Negative.  We have an authority: the law.  The "public servants" merely execute that law.  We are a nation of laws, not of men.

The statement was referencing humans, not laws.   Paul referenced humans not laws.   Those executing the laws in America are servants, not authorities.   Those creating laws are servants, not authorities.  America throws a crux in authoritarian type of laws.

The servant created laws are executed by servants.  We are a nation of people, who own our government.  This is clearly defined in numerous documents that incepted our country.  It really messes with Romans 13. 

How this deals with confession is that one would argue that since we are to submit to the "authorities" and their laws we are to turn ourselves in for repentance.

In America, we are free, and we don't have to submit to our servants, we are to submit to God.   If the servants don't know something happened, but a person has true repentance for a crime long ago, what right does a priest have to go turn them in to the cops when the canon forbids it?

The church has authority over the priest and his actions in the church.  The priest is bound to the canons that they SWORE to uphold during their ordination.  Even the OCA states no matter what the priest should not reveal a confession.

I don't see the logic in revealing a confession of something "has been past" that the person came to the priest in complete repentance about, and the priest turns around and states "turn yourself in or I will".

Perhaps, but what right does a so called 'penitent' have coming to Confession when he is not willing to repent of, in this case, the willful murder of another human being, no matter how far in the past it might be.  As Fr. G points out, that is not repentance. 

Let's take a step back, then.  Is the priest outside of his authority to deny absolution to someone who says, "I killed someone 30 years ago and I would like absolution but don't want to go to the police about it."?
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« Reply #92 on: October 31, 2012, 05:11:30 PM »

What if you go to jail for unpaid traffic tickets? Is that necessary?

The New Testament is quite clear about Christians being obedient to the civil authorities, which would include paying for traffic tickets if issued. That being said, pointing out the inutility of a particular law does not equate disregard for civil law in general.

Most of us here are from America.  We do not have authorities, we have public servants.   This is a side issue however, from revealing confession.

Negative.  We have an authority: the law.  The "public servants" merely execute that law.  We are a nation of laws, not of men.

The statement was referencing humans, not laws.   Paul referenced humans not laws.   Those executing the laws in America are servants, not authorities.   Those creating laws are servants, not authorities.  America throws a crux in authoritarian type of laws.

The servant created laws are executed by servants.  We are a nation of people, who own our government.  This is clearly defined in numerous documents that incepted our country.  It really messes with Romans 13. 

How this deals with confession is that one would argue that since we are to submit to the "authorities" and their laws we are to turn ourselves in for repentance.

In America, we are free, and we don't have to submit to our servants, we are to submit to God.   If the servants don't know something happened, but a person has true repentance for a crime long ago, what right does a priest have to go turn them in to the cops when the canon forbids it?

The church has authority over the priest and his actions in the church.  The priest is bound to the canons that they SWORE to uphold during their ordination.  Even the OCA states no matter what the priest should not reveal a confession.

I don't see the logic in revealing a confession of something "has been past" that the person came to the priest in complete repentance about, and the priest turns around and states "turn yourself in or I will".

Perhaps, but what right does a so called 'penitent' have coming to Confession when he is not willing to repent of, in this case, the willful murder of another human being, no matter how far in the past it might be.  As Fr. G points out, that is not repentance. 

Let's take a step back, then.  Is the priest outside of his authority to deny absolution to someone who says, "I killed someone 30 years ago and I would like absolution but don't want to go to the police about it."?

What does sending a repentant person to jail accomplish for anyone? That's the flaw with your view of secular laws, sometimes exceptions need to be made. If there is a repentant murderer/thief/rapist and he was forgiven for his sins, I would sure as hell hope that he never goes to jail, if he apologized to the party he sinned against, I would help him out, not the crappy secular judicial systems of the world. Jail only makes things worse if it is for pointless reasons like what I am reading.
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yeshuaisiam
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« Reply #93 on: October 31, 2012, 09:27:08 PM »

What if you go to jail for unpaid traffic tickets? Is that necessary?

The New Testament is quite clear about Christians being obedient to the civil authorities, which would include paying for traffic tickets if issued. That being said, pointing out the inutility of a particular law does not equate disregard for civil law in general.

Most of us here are from America.  We do not have authorities, we have public servants.   This is a side issue however, from revealing confession.

Negative.  We have an authority: the law.  The "public servants" merely execute that law.  We are a nation of laws, not of men.

The statement was referencing humans, not laws.   Paul referenced humans not laws.   Those executing the laws in America are servants, not authorities.   Those creating laws are servants, not authorities.  America throws a crux in authoritarian type of laws.

The servant created laws are executed by servants.  We are a nation of people, who own our government.  This is clearly defined in numerous documents that incepted our country.  It really messes with Romans 13. 

How this deals with confession is that one would argue that since we are to submit to the "authorities" and their laws we are to turn ourselves in for repentance.

In America, we are free, and we don't have to submit to our servants, we are to submit to God.   If the servants don't know something happened, but a person has true repentance for a crime long ago, what right does a priest have to go turn them in to the cops when the canon forbids it?

The church has authority over the priest and his actions in the church.  The priest is bound to the canons that they SWORE to uphold during their ordination.  Even the OCA states no matter what the priest should not reveal a confession.

I don't see the logic in revealing a confession of something "has been past" that the person came to the priest in complete repentance about, and the priest turns around and states "turn yourself in or I will".

Perhaps, but what right does a so called 'penitent' have coming to Confession when he is not willing to repent of, in this case, the willful murder of another human being, no matter how far in the past it might be.  As Fr. G points out, that is not repentance. 

Let's take a step back, then.  Is the priest outside of his authority to deny absolution to someone who says, "I killed someone 30 years ago and I would like absolution but don't want to go to the police about it."?

It really is a good point and one I understand.  But when hearing a confession, there is a process, the sacrament actually begins.  Whether absolution is given or not, as far as I know, the secrecy of the confession exists.  The priest often states that everything is before God, and that the confession is private and secret.

Certainly if the priest decides not to grant absolution, they can't say that "the confession was not real because they would not turn themselves in".   Certainly absolution was not granted, but we can't deny that the confession happened where the priest is free to run to the police about it.  I mean this could go really far on many things...   what do you think?
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Ioannis Climacus
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« Reply #94 on: November 14, 2012, 05:22:44 PM »

Most of my library is still in storage right now.  I may be able to access it in a few weeks.

St. Nikodemos also states that there are times when matters divulged within 'confession' can be divulged.

Do you happen to have a reference, Father?
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Note : Many of my posts (especially the ones antedating late 2012) do not reflect charity, tact, or even views I presently hold. Please forgive me for any antagonism I have caused.
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