Shaw: Contraception is one reason for the Catholic flight from confession.

Last time I looked, the surveys were reporting that something like eight out of 10 American Catholics said they thought contraception was OK and the Church was wrong about it. Obviously this includes many of childbearing, child-rearing age who are practicing contraception now.

As far as the Sacrament of Penance is concerned, these people don’t want to confess contraception because they believe — or anyway say they believe — it isn’t wrong, and they don’t care to give it up. But they don’t want not to confess it since they know perfectly well that the Church says something different, so not confessing would be, well, kind of dishonest. The non-solution to the dilemma is not to receive the sacrament at all. Which is where we are now.

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