St. Teresa of Avila on Worldly Confessors

“And if we deal with virtuous persons discreetly and moderately, especially confessors, we will benefit. But if you should become aware that the confessor is turning toward some vanity, be suspicious about everything and in no way carry on conversatinos with him even though they may seem to be good, but make your confession briefly and bring it to a conclusion. And it would be best to tell the prioress that your soul doesn’t get on well with him and change confessors. That would be the most proper thing to do–if you can do it without hurting his reputation” (Way of Perfection Ch. 4, para 13).

“Thus they must speak to spiritual and learned persons. If the appointed confessor is not spiritual and learned, they should at times seek out others. and if, perhaps, they receive orders not to confess to others, they can speak otuside of confession to the kind of person I mentioned” (Way of Perfection, Ch. 5, para. 4).

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