Making a Good Confession

By | September 24, 2019

Let’s talk about confession and why you need it, Jack! Here’s why you need confession, Jack! … and Jill and Jane and Jimmy. OK Hi, my name’s Father Mike Schmitz and
this is Ascension Presents. So one of the things I love to do as a Catholic priest, is I love, I love hearing confessions, not because I like the dirt on people, you know, I don’t hardly remember anything I hear in confessions. It’s this thing I call divine amnesia. The thing I love about confession is
it’s always a place of victory, it’s always a place where people are
returning to Jesus. It’s really remarkable. But one of the things I’ve noticed sometimes, is that when someone comes back to confession, if they’ve been gone for a long time and say, “You know Father, it’s been thirty years since my last confession, Fifty years since my last confession.”
“OK, and what do you need to confess?” “Well, you know, I, uh, I was a little bit short with my wife or I kind of, I was a little bit hard on my kids,” or something like this. “All right.”
“That’s it.” “OK, after thirty years that … just … alright.” “OK I say, “OK let’s, uh, pause. Let’s go back,” and I ask the question, I almost always ask the question in everyone’s confession, “Has God been number one in your life?” “Have you put other things ahead of God?” And oftentimes, the response is,
“I don’t know. Well, I tried to be a good person.” OK, that’s great, that’s wonderful
um, but that wasn’t the question. The question wasn’t,
“Hey, do you try to be a good person?” Because *garbled* when we compare ourselves to that, I mean the reality is this: we always think like, “Why, I’m not as bad as I could be,” but the truth is you’re also probably not as good as you should be, so like that’s not even a thing. You’re comparing your goodness to, like, people you know. Our goodness is compared to God himself. So let’s go back. “I try to be a good person.” OK. That wasn’t the question. The question was,
is God the center of your life? Because if anything other than God is the center of your life, that’s the first thing, that’s the first thing that we need to confess
every single time we go to confession. And the older we get, the more stuff
there is that competes for the first place in our hearts. So when it comes to going to confession, not like a kid because that’s maybe that was the last, was the
last time you went to confession, but going to confession like an adult, we
first have to do is we have to realize that one of the number-one sins we
probably have, is that we don’t put God in the center. We put him on the sidelines. Moving on. One of the other things we need to do, if we want to go to confession like an adult, is we need to understand what sin is. Someone says, “You know, have you, have you, you know … What do you need to confess for your sins?” “Well, I don’t know. I don’t really hurt anybody.” All right that’s great, but that’s not
what sin is. I’d like to define sin like this. I mean
the Bible has a lot of different ways to describe sin. It is very, very helpful, all of them.
But here’s how I like to describe sin: Sin is basically, it’s not like I’m angrily defiant against God, it doesn’t necessarily involve hurting someone else. It doesn’t necess … it’s never just a mistake or an accident. Sin is this: God, I know what you want me to do. I don’t care. I want to do what I want to do. That’s what sin is: God, I know what you want.
I want what I want. God, I know what you want me to do.
I’m gonna do what I want to do. It’s knowing what God wants and freely choosing to do something else. And so in light of that, to be able to go back and say, “OK, yeah when I was in second grade, the thing I knew God wanted me to do was obey my parents, wanted me to be nice to my siblings. He wanted me to not to cheat at school,” and those kind of things, but now here you are at twenty-five, now you’re here at fifty-five. OK, what does God want for your life? You say, “I have no idea even where to start.” Well thankfully, the Church gives us cheat
sheets so here’s where you can start. Here’s four places that you can start to be
able to make an examination of conscience like an adult but here’s my invitation for you: Your cheat sheets should be appropriate to your age and to your state in life. It doesn’t do a lot of good to have a cheat sheet, like an examination of conscience, that’s made for second graders or a confession cheat sheet made for single people when you’re a married person or for married people
when you’re a single person. Actually, there’s a fantastic examination of conscience for priests that just blows me away. It goes so deep, I’m like, “Oh, my gosh. This is incredible. That’s helpful.” So first thing, find a good examination of conscience. Number two, there’s this prayer called the Litany of Humility by Cardinal Merry de Val and it’s this prayer that, you know, basically, it says, “Lord, from the desire of being loved, deliver me in Jesus.
From the desire of being extolled, deliver me Jesus.” Go through all these things like,
“I desire being loved more than I desire to love.” I desire to be extolled,
more than a desire to honor someone else. To go through this litany of humility and realize there are some wounds in me. There are some areas in my life where I said,
“God, I know what you want. I want what I want.” A third opportunity for a cheat sheet is go to Jesus’ own words, the Beatitudes. In the Beatitudes, Jesus says blessed are the meek, they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are the merciful they’ll be
shown mercy. Do I live in a meek way?
Do I show mercy? Do I work and strive after peace? These are areas where I can look at my life and say,
“Am I doing it or am I not?” And the fourth examination of consciousness, fourth cheat sheet is actually called a Consciousness Examen. Now, St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, which is the order that Pope Francis belongs to, is, he came up with this thing called the Consciousness Examen. Here’s what it is: It’s not the same thing as an examination of conscience. Here’s the steps: Go into prayer, you ask the Holy Spirit to help you, because sometimes we don’t know what we need to confess. Number two, you go over your day, your actual day that day. This is usually at the end of the day, right? Go over your day and walk through in your memory what happened. For all the areas in your life that day, where you said yes to God, where his grace was there, his invitation was there and you said “yes”, go through that day and say, “Thank you God for this, thank you for this, thank you for this.” At the end of the day, “Thank you, Lord,”
and then start again. Go back to the beginning. What were those times of your day where God was offering his grace and you said “no”? What were those times through your day where God, where it was very clear that God said, “I want you to do this,” but you said, “I want to do what I want to do”? To go through those moments of your day and at the end of that, say, “God, I’m sorry. Please forgive me,” and lay that at the feet of Jesus, because you realize it’s not just about sin, it’s about living out of a relationship with God.
That’s why the first thing I need to ask myself is this: Is God at the center of my life or is He in
the sidelines in my life? The degree to which you are living from the
relationship with God is the active part of your life. “God, I notice you were here, thank you.” “God I knew you were here and you were inviting me to do something and I didn’t do it, I’m sorry.” I promise you if you take any one of these cheat sheets and begin living them, begin walking through them, begin practicing them, knowing that God needs to be at the center and not at sidelines, I promise you, if you do this, you’ll begin learning how to make confession, to go to confession like an adult. Actually, learning how to go to
confession like a saint. And that’s what God wants you to be. From all of us here at Ascension Presents,
my name’s Father Mike. God bless.

100 thoughts on “Making a Good Confession

  1. Carla Villarreal Post author

    Divine amnesia 😂
    Made me chuckle, thanks fr. Mike

  2. A Smoke D. Post author

    Mike i ask you, where does scripture say i need to confess to a man????? Where does scripture say a man can absolve one of sin? ANSWER: IT DOES NOT! CATHOLIC FAITH IS OF SATAN!!!! Come out of her. My people, was said to you…………………………..

  3. Richard Frost Post author

    Confession has a serious problem in the modern world: tape recorders. It should, by design, be totally secret. The thought has crossed my mind that the clergy’s personal confession has been compromised by this. Over jealous police and parishioners with poor character have recorded them… Now it seems that the Priest and Clergy confession is on a loudspeaker….. A very important and great sacrifice, however it was set up for Middle Ages society. Not today’s high tech society… PRAY FOR THE CATHOLIC CHURCH

  4. Phrogge Prof Post author

    Never talk to a priest who worships idols in the Catholic cult

  5. Jack Pitre Post author

    My name is Jack and this kinda spooked me hahaha

  6. Candy Clews Post author

    I wonder what ex-Cardinal McCarricks cheat sheet looks like?

  7. Angie G Post author

    Wow that touched my heart. I'm not catholic but I think God dosen't mind I watch you.

  8. Biel Sabas Post author

    How do you make holiness look so cool, Fr Mike?

  9. Sheila Haughie Post author

    I confess my sins directly to God through my Lord Jesus Christ because He is my ONLY mediator between me and Father God.

  10. MN Patriot Post author

    I'm going back tonight after 2 years of being hurt by different individuals in my former parish. I am 61 years old and feel like I need a cheat sheet for the act of contrition. I can't remember it, let alone how much history I should divulge in my confession. seriously, there's not that much every day seem to be the same maybe that's a good place to start my confession.

  11. three frogs Post author

    i feel that he takes it easy on me, i take advantage of him sometimes

  12. ANTONIO CHIU Post author



    Thanks for sharing.+Thanks God+

  13. hendrix4151 Post author

    i wish that the elite would confess that 911 was an inside job.

  14. Mark Andersen Post author

    Awesome Father Mike. I'm a Presbyterian, but your videos inspire me to grow as a Christian. Thank you!

  15. Mike L Post author

    I don't go to confession because of the rapes and cover ups. How can they even be close to credible? I talk to Jesus, not a massive pedophile ring

  16. curious george Post author

    I am thinking, after a great deal of research, many of the good ole boys running around in their satin wizard capes and medieval hats should be marching into confessional boxes, confessing clerical sexual abuse then marching to the nearest police station and turning themselves in…..

  17. Hazel Equinox Post author

    Divine amnesia! Omg I died laughing! Perhaps we should all practice a little Divine amnesia! Lol!!!

  18. Eli Men Post author

    Catholics say Marry Is( Morther of God ) Higher then Jesus ! Marry is not Virgen ! Jesus has Brothers ! She was Virgen with Jesus ! After that she had more Children! Yes Marry is Morther of Jesus , but not god ! Do not knee down to her or any Images ! There are man made ! Open your Heart ! Let Not the Corrupt you even More ! Look How the Catholic are hideing Adultery and What did God Said about Adultery ! Those who commits adultery won't hinder in to The Kingdom of Heavens !

  19. Pretentious Ass Wipe Post author

    Are non-Catholics that haven’t been confirmed/baptized allowed to go to confession?

  20. Nick Araujo Post author

    I love all of the amazing catholic people in the comments here!

  21. akaLuke Post author

    I watch a Catholic Program that he's included in.
    Very, very Inspring.

  22. Bill Smith Post author

    Why do I need to confess my sins to another human, when I
    can confess them and receive immediate absolution from Jesus Christ my Lord and Savior?

    "Such confidence we have through Christ toward God. Not that of
    ourselves we are qualified to take credit for anything as coming from us;
    rather, our qualification comes from God, who has indeed qualified us as
    ministers of a new covenant , not of letter but of spirit, for the letter brings
    death, but the Spirit gives life" . (2 Corinthians 3 4:6)

    Christ instituted the New Covenant with His death on the Cross, and He took on the role of High Priest and became the Mediator between man and God, "For there is one God. There is also one mediator between God and the human race, Christ Jesus, himself human, who gave himself ransom for all."( 1 Timothy 2 5:6).

  23. Htebazile Arm Post author

    Mama Mary, Mother of vocation and church, pray for us. Infant Jesus, have mercy on us.

  24. Sarah Sprenger Post author

    I love when Fr. Mike says a Confession is a place for victory, returning to Jesus! I think this is so true, so many Catholics are afraid of confession, but you don't need to be. This is such a wonderful sacrament we have, its freeing and if you do it consistently it makes a difference in your life.

  25. Hi, my name is John Wumsh Post author

    Pastor Mike: what are your thoughts on someone going to confession on Saturday while at the same time planning for the big Sunday afternoon tailgate party where they are going to get drunk and hopefully hook up later with someone. I am being sincere and hopefully you understand my question. Thanks

  26. lalaithan Post author

    Prepping for my first, this weekend. I'm really hard on myself in general and ended up with a huge, overwhelming list. This video is making me look at what has been wedged in between me and God, not just "bad stuff" and not just the big mortal sin baddies on there.

  27. Narhew Post author

    Has anyone else noticed how dilated his pupils are because of how enthusiastic and excited he is to spread the word of our lord Jesus Christ! Keep up the good work and god bless

  28. LovePikaMusic Post author

    sooo what do you do if you struggle with putting God first? Like you know you should care, but you just.. don't.. Or like you know you should renounce your sins, but you don't really want to, but you know you should, but you don't really feel regret..

  29. LovePikaMusic Post author

    Are there any good examinations of conscience you could recommend? I was not aware they could be different for different age groups and whatnot, and the ones I find seem to be very general, and tbh I often struggle knowing what counts as a sin? I never know if something is "what God wants" or if it's simply my own wish/intrusive thought (I get them a lot), so I often can't really tell if it was God or temptation that I said no to, and I think I'm scrupulous too

  30. Kristen Quinn Post author

    Can you share more about “sin is never by accident” and “sin is when you know what god wants you to do and you do what you want instead” I wanted to do a sermon on this and I thought this would be a great topic to explain and learn more about. Thanks!

  31. Deadlytriton Post author

    5:11 My confirmation saint is Saint Ignatius of Loyola!

  32. last time Post author

    I was a Catholic for many years and always had a problem with confession
    I never believed in confessing my sins to a priest.
    Not only that my sins are between me and God
    I believe in Jesus sacrifice on the cross for my sins…He paid the price for me and my sins …no where in the bible does it say that a man has the power to forgive sins including catholic priests. The catholic church has taken it on themselves to make up their own rules none of which are biblical not confession not purgatory not praying to Mary not praying to saints none of it is biblical. It is Christ and the cross . Admitting that we are sinners…repenting of our sins and asking for FORGIVENESS. I love Mary but I don't worship Mary
    1st commandment
    No Gods before is Father God Jesus Christ and Holy Spirit.

  33. Kirsten Lauryn Post author

    I’m going to go to my first confession soon after being confirmed and I’m very nervous. It seems really scary/embarrassing does anyone have any tips?

  34. Defending the faith. Post author

    Confess our sins to each other. Meaning confess to the ones you sinned against.

  35. Jack Garret Post author

    Not going to lie I jumped when He said Jack. lol Jack is one of my alieses XP.
    This guy is really cool.

  36. Leeroy Simpsonn Post author

    Love the video 👍 even though I dont go to church

  37. Eddie Bradley Post author

    And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.

  38. Eddie Bradley Post author

    Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
    1 Timothy:2:4
    For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
    1 Timothy:2:5

  39. Jack Aubrey Post author

    Thank you, Father Mike, your videos help me daily. JA

  40. harry potter Post author

    What exactly goes on in a catholic church?.

  41. the Orca Post author

    Do we really have to confess our sins all the time.  Since God made us all the way we are doesn't he know we all have our own strengths and weakness' and that a lot of times in life we're not always able to choose if it's right or not, but we do what we have to sometimes.  Like if I were to find a huge sack of money and I knew who it belonged to some would say God put it there for me to find to test my honesty and see if I returned it because that's what he'd want, right?  But how do we know that's what he wants? Maybe God had me find the money to reward me for something good I've done earlier in life, or maybe he arranged for me to find cause he knew that something really bad was going to happen to me where I'd need the money, so how can we really be sure what God wants?

  42. Diana O Post author

    I wish all priests would teach like this..

  43. Bart Thompson Post author

    • “Is God the center of my life?”

    • Sin is “I know what you want, God, but I’m going to do what I want.”

    4 pieces of advice (a “cheat sheet”) on making a good confession:
    1) finding an age- (or-stage-of-life) appropriate examination of conscience
    2) The Litany of Humility
    3) The Beatitudes
    4) St. Ignatius of Loyola’s Daily Examen

    Thank you Fr. Mike! The message of your videos is always so good.

  44. L T Post author

    I thought it was only based on the Ten Commandments. What if we’re in unrecognized sin??

  45. Kim Wooldridge Post author

    I go to confession for 2 fold, Divine Mercy and Counsel. More often than not, I receive Mercy but lack Counsel. Praying for a Confessor that can lead me towards strengthening my virtue and guiding me towards a life of undeniable grace!

  46. Harry Balszak Post author

    This guy is a serial killer without a doubt.

  47. CHRISTO JOSE Post author

    whatever others say against confession
    it doesnt matter to me
    the releif you get after a good confession cannot be expressed
    that is the power of confession
    thank you lord for giving us this blessed gift

  48. Roberto Nasca Post author

    Father ived sinned i eould like to make a confesión by internet i can't nota yo yo vhurch rigth know i live un Venezuela

  49. T Rea Okerberg Post author

    Fr Mike, I love watching your videos. You remind me a LOT of a friend of mine (don't worry, that's a good thing). Thank you for these.

  50. xtreme survival Post author

    Father just over a week ago I gave my first confession in 30 years, I was nervous, apprehensive and ashamed. But once I was in the confessional (in which this beautiful true Priest went out of his way to hear my confession because it wasn't at the allocated times for the Church) When I was on my knees my sins poured out of my mouth. IT WAS LIBERATING and I felt this weight off my soul. So I say to every Catholic go to Confession and don't wait 30 years like I did. God Bless.

  51. Ksch Koff Post author

    How do you know if God wants you to do something? :/

  52. Arcenia13 Post author

    I use the 10 commandments however you have given me other areas to use…this is phenomenal! Thank you for sharing this valuable resource Padre! 😉

  53. Roger Fisk Post author

    The thief on the cross was a thief,he had no good works,but Jesus saved him because he believed in Jesus,that's all,the word "believe" is in the New Testament 249 times.

  54. Omedchazak613 Post author

    What bothers me about confession is that a criminal who confesses their crime is PROTECTED from justice by the priest. The priest is just as guilty! I mean what if a personal admits to crimes against children?! Or a person is stealing from their job?!

  55. Yan G Post author

    Why confess to another sinner (e.g. priest) when u can talk directly to God.

    1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God and ONE MEDIATOR between God and men, that man Christ Jesus.

    How sure are u that u r forgiven when u dont even have personal relationship with God.

    John 14:6 Jesus said I am the way and the truth and the life NO one comes to the Father except through me.

  56. Butterfly Away Post author

    I am looking forward to being able to participate in confession once I complete my sacraments(all but baptism). I love your videos. I was raised Baptist and have come to the Catholic Church in an unexpected way. My husband who is baptized catholic asked I go to Catholic Church when I wanted to take our boys(he now comes also, prayed about that one a lot at Mass) so I decided to give it a try. I went with a closed heart thinking there was no way I would find Jesus there. I left filled with the Holy Spirit and loving the Priest. I had a strong faith in Christ when I was young and was baptized. Now I see what I’ve been missing for years and found it where I least expected. God works in wonderful and mysterious ways. God bless you.

  57. Mrs. ECT Post author

    i go to confession once a month for the past 6 months🙏 thank u God for the gift of reconciliation

  58. Boguslawa Majewicz Post author

    Again title and description in polish. Strange

  59. Lindsay Castleberry Post author

    Would it be a sin not to specify the sin in confession?

  60. The Dolmen Post author

    Thank you for your words of wisdom Fr. Mike.

  61. Jake Post author

    I want someone to enlighten me on this pls, since i have some big questions. I went on a confession last month and another one just a day ago but i don't know if they are 'valid' or not. They say that in order for a confession to be proper you have to confess the mortal sins you remember in kind and number. I didn't tell how many times i commited my mortal sins on my first confession. On my second confession i decided to make a list of my sins so i can just read them out to the priest. It turned out to be a really long list and when i started reading them out to the priest, I'm also not sure why but i skipped over some (maybe 2 or 3) of the less serious ones. I think it's because the list was quitee long and i thought maybe the priest had something else to do, since i just asked him for confession right after an evening monday mass, we just did it on an bench outside the church. Are those two confessions valid? Are my sins not yet forgiven because of what i did? Answers would be really appreciated, thanks

  62. Mib Post author

    Confession is the best thing the Catholic church has after the Eurcharist. We are so blessed our salvation is secured with confession. So many people go to confession after so many years away and feel so much at peace. Dont miss a day without going to confession. Those that go to confession regularly know that Jesus truly loves them for he forgives our sins over and over again. Dont be afraid. Attend Holy Mass, Confession, Adoration, Bible, Rosary, Divine Mercy

  63. Brad Blackledge Post author

    Thank You Fr. Mike, getting ready for my 2nd confession, very helpful!!

  64. chalice3571 Post author

    All your videos on confession are great…
    In the parishes where confession is available only 1 hour on Saturday, or some where none are available, and yes, there are parishes which DO NOT OFFER confession, then flagging a priest takes away from the spirit of the moment… all these interruptions brake our preparedness.
    Fr, Mike, can you talk about that, please

  65. Allison Bergamorto Post author

    Ok. I always speak in my mind that Jesus forgive me at that moment if I have sinned…in other words I confess as I did it and I ask for help if I messed up…..if I wait for a special day I might forget what I need forgiveness for….is this wrong

  66. Chris N Post author

    As a practicing Catholic, how often should I go to confession?

  67. Bobbi Ceryanec Post author

    Thank You Fr. Mike Schmidt, you are such a smiling happy priest, it shows. I also watch Bishop Barren on IPAD …. He is knowable in the church teaching and am from Chicago as I am, but now live in Iowa. I definitely believe that when I receive the Holy Eucharist, I am receiving THE BODY & BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST! ! JESUS SAID SO AT THE LAST SUPPER! (Am 82 yrs old) so am old school (nuns 12 years of Catholic School in Chicago years ago!) In Times now, so many Church teaching does not really acknowledge THE EUCHARIST as we were taught SO SINCERELY Back in time. My Grandchildren are having children now, and I pray that as these children come into the Church that so many teachings are so SERIOUSLY TAUGHT< ESPECIALLY REGARDING THE SACRAMENTS!! AMEN

  68. T G Post author

    That Litany of Humility is good solid punch in the stomach, spiritually speaking.

  69. Richard Mattrella Post author

    You know I've been a Catholic since the Cradle everywhere I go in everything I do you know it is for God you know I'm not saying that I'm a complete Angel but what I am saying is people of different religions they feel that the Catholics are bad because of all the scandals and abuse in the church you got to remember one thing one thing it's not the face it's the people within the church there is toxins and everything the water we drink the food we eat the people we love the people we know in in our own church but you know you can only do so much as human beings people got to realize that Catholics are human too you know we sin we repent we live we breathe we hurt and sometimes we cause pain what's the difference between pain causing pain is sometimes we don't know we do it and sometimes we do do it but the Catholic way is if you know you've caused pay repent and make reparation with a person you hurt now if you are Catholic and you're causing pain will then you need an examination of conscience it's that simple

  70. PianoDisneygal10 Post author

    I’m curious, as someone who refers to himself as “Father Mike”, what does a good Catholic do with Matthew 23:9?

    “9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.”

  71. Miss Irritated Post author


  72. Brandon Basque-Albert Post author

    What if I forget to confess one sin?

    John 3:16-17 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him."

    John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."

    Ephesians 1:7 "In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace"

    Confessing doesn't cleanse or pardon sins. Only the shed blood of Christ cleanses from all sins. He died for YOU! Do you believe that!?

    Colossians 1:20 "and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross."

    Romans 5:9 "Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God."

  73. joseph jackson Post author

    3:00 I frequently literally think about this whenever I commit the mortal sin I need to go to confession for so often. Please pray for me to have chastity and a pure heart that yearns for God

  74. CelticConservative Post author

    I've been baptized but my anxiety disorder makes me about it because I'm fearful.

  75. Elizabeth Kirkeide Post author

    I often feel misunderstood at confession. So I stick mainly to I am sorry.

  76. Bash Post author

    I'm too nervous going to a confession,I haven't even memories the prayers

  77. The First Ginger Kitten Post author

    FR. Mike , I'd love to be drunk in god's love as you are , I can see Jesus in your eyes …. , God bless you 😇.

  78. sherry cox Post author

    Why does a man need to tell anotjer man his sins. Where is this commanded?????


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *