Out of the Box

Yesterday was K's first confession (in preparation for the First Holy Communion).
The children had the choice between doing the traditional tell-all (with the screen in between)
or the more progressive face-to-face type.
She told her dad that she wanted to do the face-to-face because she believed that
"it is how it should be done."

Confession is an interesting thing.
A lot of malarkey perhaps,
but there is something to be said about unloading one's dark dire secrets onto someone who is bound by tradition to keep mum about it.

Reminds me of a friend of mine (who shall remain nameless)
She was what was considered a "good girl."
She feared eternal damnation.
She did not engage.
One day she did.
She was torn up about it, losing many nights of sleep.
"damned to hell," she self-proselytized.
She decided to take matters into her own hands and follow church doctrine
(go in peace and commit all acts of debauchery-- the sacrament of penance is good for something).

To remain incognito she travelled for hours in search of the perfect venue.
She found a church in a remote town.
She approached the priest after mass and inquired about scheduled confessions.
The priest replied,
"I can listen to your confession now."
"Here? Now? Don't you have a box or something?" she asked incredulously.
(She had never had a face-to-face confession with a priest and was not sure she was ready for one now that she was about to unload The Big One.)
"I have time right now" he replied.
( pehaps the logistics of a very small town did not permit scheduled confessions or honest ones for that matter.)
So after taking a deep breath she dropped her bomb.

Priest: "How many times?"
She: "That night?"

Perhaps the in-the-box confessional would have allowed for the surreptitious wiping of nervous perspiration.
The priest, after all, is fallible.