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Friday, August 19, 2011

Getting Ready to Confess

Dear Bro Jo,

So I've finally decided to talk to my branch president. I've needed to for a few years, but I had tried convincing myself I was fine. I now know that it's time to let go of my sins and quit beating myself up for them every second of every day. (I'd rather not elaborate)

What I'm wondering is how would you tell your bishop/branch president what the sin(s) were, and that you want to be done with them and fully repent? I've been so close to self-harming because of this (and other reasons, but thankfully I haven't gotten that far).

So how do I tell him? I'm worried about it, but part of me isn't. I feel like I've made myself suffer enough. I need to deal with this. I need to be able to move on.

Any help would be amazing. Thank you.

- Trying

Dear Trying,

Make the appointment.

Pray before you meet.

Once you're in his office and it's your turn to speak (he may want to open with a prayer) take a deep breath and just start talking. Don't hold anything back.

Let the Spirit be your guide. You'll be fine.

Very proud of you for taking this step.

- Bro Jo


Anonymous said...

I did this same thing about a month ago. After 5 years of struggling and beating myself up over all these things I'd been doing, I finally made an appointment with my Bishop. And it was TERRIFYING. I had no idea how to explain everything I'd done and how I felt and how I so badly wanted to feel forgiven. But I just prayed right before I left for the church that I would know what to say and that the Bishop would understand the desires of my heart and be inspired to best help me.

When I got there, I was still really nervous and still kind of struggled with words, but he was very patient and understanding and let me take my time trying to sort out all my thoughts. The Spirit was so strong, and I know that that helped make things not awkward, and left me with such a love for my Bishop.

The point is, because you are taking this step you will be blessed and you will be able to figure out exactly what needs to be said. And afterwards you'll be left with the most amazing feeling of comfort and peace.

Leah said...

Brother Jo is very right in not holding anything back, but at the same time, don't forget about discretion!

My bishop put it very well this past Sunday: "Tell him enough so that he can help you repent of your sin, but don't tell him so much that he has to go back and repent himself."

It's very important not to hide your sins from the bishop, but don't be explicit in all the details, either. He doesn't need to know that part of it.