Individual confession is growing as a spiritual practice in Protestant churches where it was once traditionally neglected, reports the Dallas Morning News (March 16).
The newspaper reports that “growing numbers of Protestants now are finding more personal, face-to-face forms of spirituality meaningful.” In recent years best selling spiritual writings, such as Richard Foster’s Celebration of Discipline and Marjorie Thompson’s Soul Feast have introduced mainline and evangelical Protestants to the practice of individual confession.
More recently, the rise of “accountable discipleship,” where participants confess their sins and talk about their spiritual progress to other small group members, has helped spur the trend. People who have gone through Walk to Emmaus, a United Methodist discipleship program, often continue gathering in “reunion groups,” where they are asked to reflect on the question, “When was your faith tested this week through failure?”
In evangelical circles, Becky Tirabassi’s popular book Change Your Life takes a page from recovery programs in asking people to confess to God, oneself and others their wrongdoings.