Callers hear a soothing male voice welcoming them to “The Line of the Lord” at a cost of 31 pence a minute.
“For advice on confessing, press one. To confess, press two. To listen to some confessions, press three,” it says.
“In case of serious or mortal sins – that is, sins that have cut you off from Christ our Lord, it is indispensable to confide in a priest,”
The site was set up this month at the beginning of Lent by a group of Catholics working for AABAS, a small Paris company that provides telephone messaging services.
But the Conference of French Bishops, has warned in a statement that the line had “no approval from the Catholic Church in France.”
It does not offer absolution for sins, which only a priest can provide, said the creator, Camille, who asked for her second name not be cited because she had received threats about the service.
“The idea is to confess sins which are not capital sins, but minor sins, directly to God,” she said, adding that the line received about 300 calls in its first week. [reference]
Well I like for the most part their explanation of mortal sin – but of course the whole thing could easily confuse those who do no realize that Sacraments can only be received in person. The listening to others confessions option shows thoughthat this was not some service made it with good intentions by mistaken Catholics. Ever since the telephone was invented, people wondered about this possibility and it seems to be brought up once agan with every new communication technology. Though if confession could be done via the phone – charging for the service would I guess be eSimony.
Her talking about confessing sins “directly to God” via the telephone is problematic if you don’t have the area code for Heaven. Though surely the area code for Hell is 666.