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Bless Me Father, For I Have Sinned

Updated: Sep 12, 2023


I have to admit, I’ve always been a little jealous of Catholics. Not for their lengthy, ritual filled services, or their majestic robes. Not for the school uniforms or the great thigh muscles they build from the constant kneeling and standing, and certainly not for the overt and implied obligatory guilt that all Catholics endure. (I have enough of that on my own, thank you very much.) #Guilt


But I find the whole idea of a cleansing confession very appealing. Walking into a little booth with the weight of your transgressions on your shoulders, and unburdening yourself to a little screen where a mysterious voice instructs you to repeat the number of hail Marys that is commensurate with your degree of evil deeds seems refreshing. You’re given the exact steps that need to be taken in order to be redeemed.


In all fairness, my knowledge of the Catholic church has mostly come from the slew of horror movies I’ve watched over the years. (There always seems to be one or two scenes with a nun, priest, or some other representation of Catholocism.)

So, my vision of what a confession is like is probably completely inaccurate. The image I have of a beautiful, hand carved, wooden, confessional booth with the sliding panel which reveals the partition screen between priest and sinner probably doesn’t exist anywhere but old Europe.


The sky-high ceilings and jewel-toned, stained glass windows that envelop a collection of ornate, gold, religious artifacts are in reality, probably nothing more than the remains of an old gymnasium that was purchased at a good price and decked with red carpet and bad lighting. And I’d be lying if I said the non-Hollywood version didn’t leave me feeling a bit unfulfilled. Nevertheless, an officially sanctioned checklist for obtaining a clean slate with the God of all creation eclipses the condition of the venue.


So, with the goal of absolution, I've been practicing for my first, non-denominational, yet Catholic-inspired confession. I imagine it will go something like this:


Bless me Father, for I have sinned. It’s been, um, forever since my last confession. I think that’s what I’m supposed to say. If not, I’m sorry. So, wow, this is awkward. Um, I guess I just start, huh? Well, I’ve lied 25,000 times.


That might not be right, but I tried to over-estimate since I’m confessing for almost 50 years’ worth of sin. Actually, just to be safe, let’s make that 50,000. (I’m assuming I have to include little white lies I’ve told to spare someone’s feelings like, “Yes, I love the sweater with the kittens on it.” Or, “Of course I’ve never faked it", right?) So, I’d say 50,000 is pretty close to accurate.

I took the Lord’s name in vain 5,000 times. Which, I know sounds like a lot. But it really only averages out to about eight times a month and most of them are from hurting myself, which I do about twice a day. So, if you look at it that way, I really should be applauded for not doing it more often, Sir. I mean, Your Honor. Father.


Can I just call you Jason? You know, like Jason Priestly? Oh, you don’t know who he is?


I’m sorry, I was trying to be funny. No, I understand that sin is very serious. Of course. I’m sorry.


I cursed like 500,000 times. Oh, but I didn’t include crap, damn or dick in that total, because those are all ok on network television these days. So, I figure if I had to draw the line somewhere…that was a good place. Is that where you’d draw the line, Father? Because, if not, I’m going to need to borrow a calculator.


That’s fine? Ok, then I think 500k is pretty accurate.

Um, I lusted and coveted about ten times a day. I mean, I’m not a perv…most of it was coveting. Wait, coveting means I wanted something someone else had, right? So, like, being jealous? Ok, yeah. Um, I’m pretty bad with that.


Oh wait! I just realized that I probably didn’t start lusting until about age 12 or 13, and even then…it would have been puppy lust. So, I think that number needs to be knocked down a bit. Maybe you can calculate out about 8 times a day from age 12 until now? That should be a good estimate.


But, remember, most of it was coveting, ok?


Like, a lot of it.


Probably 90%. Just remember that when you’re doling out hail Marys, ok?


Let’s see, what are some things I'm supposed to do? Oh right, father and mother. Well, it depends what “honor thy father and mother means”. Does it mean honor them, like treat them special on their birthday? Because I totally do that. I’m really good at that! Or does it mean honor them, as in make them proud and don’t embarrass them? Because I’m probably not the shining example of excellence that they want representing the family name. You know, on account of all the cursing and coveting and stuff.


I didn’t kill anybody, so I should get some bonus points for that, right?


Does that collar thing hurt? Because it looks like it would be super annoying and uncomfortable.


Hey, has anyone ever told you they killed someone? You can tell me. Wait! Let me guess! They killed their spouse, right? It’s always the spouse. I watch a ton of Dateline and believe me, it's always the spouse! Do you still let them come to mass? Do you let them take communion?


Oh. Nobody’s ever confessed murder to you? That’s a bummer. Well, you probably wouldn’t tell me if they had anyway. You look like someone who can keep a secret.


Father, can I tell you a secret? I lied. It was about 50/50 on the lust/coveting thing.


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