Catholic bishops in Philippines nix confessions by e-mail, SMS

A spokesperson for the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines said yesterday that confessions submitted by mobile text messaging, e-mail, or similar electronic means are "unacceptable." The pace of SMS and mobile communications adoption in the Philippines is among the highest worldwide. Confessing sins via text messaging and wireless e-mail has become a growing trend among younger Catholics in the country, but the Church does not approve.
Catholic priests, [CBCP secretary general Hernando Coronel] added, are prohibited from granting absolution for a confessant's sins using text messaging, e-mail or by faxing the absolutions to the confessant. The Catholic Church cannot allow confession using these means because confidentiality is very important to the sacrament of penance and reconciliation.

"We have to protect that confidentiality and we insist on personal confession of the penitent to the priests."

Thankfully for the rest of us, sinning by way of SMS or e-mail is as easy as ever. And as BoingBoing reader Joey points out, perhaps it's understandable that priests wouldn't want to be bombarded with messages like, "OMFG!!! 4GV M3 F4TH3R, 4 1 H4V3 S1NN3D. L8R!!!" Link to Philippine Star story, Discuss