New thread mostly because I wasn't sure where to put it. Apologies if it's already been discussed. Can anyone explain to me how 'confession' works? My main question is this: If you confess something bad does the Priest limit himself to giving you God's forgiveness, or does he also give you advice on what to do about it here on earth? I'm thinking of how Kate might have confessed to the Portuguese priest that she did something bad to Madeleine. I imagine a Protestant minister giving advice, and I'm sure it would be something like: "come clean", "make things right here on earth", "give Madeleine a proper christian burial", "pay the consequences (jail, whatever) and get your life back on track." If your priest told you that and you're a devout Catholic, wouldn't you do it? Hard to imagine not doing it. Since Kate obviously has not come clean, there's some 'splainin' to do. Either: The priest did not give her advice (because they're not allowed to), or The priest give her advice but she is ignoring it (because ... ???), or Kate never confessed having done something bad to Madeleine. But if Kate didn't confess to having done something bad to Madeleine, then why is the Priest "tormented" as some reports suggest?