We have a classical Lutheran Academy connected to our church. One of the practices that we have is on Thursday afternoons, we offer private confession and absolution to the students and faculty. Been doing it for years, but I’ll tell you about that another time.
This morning I had a first for me. I had a teacher come up and ask me if a student had gone to confession. The student had left the room and come back fairly quickly, and she is concerned that he was doing something other than what he said he was doing (the student is in 1st grade). I have always held that not only the content of the confession, but also the identity of penitents are held in confidence. However, this is a tricky two kingdom matter, as I see it. Where are my obligations as a pastor and as a de factor member of the faculty? Am I free to tell a teacher that a student has gone to confession in a school setting?