At Inside Catholic, David Mills explains how the Church can interest believers in confession:
Confession ought to be a great selling point for the Catholic Church. Years ago, I saw some young Evangelicals ask an older Catholic convert about confession, with the guarded but lurid interest of college freshmen in an anthropology class studying comparative sexual practices. As they kept talking, however, many of them seemed to long for the certainty of forgiveness the Catholic had.
A friend of mine recently spoke to the theology class at an Evangelical Protestant college. Both Catholic and Protestant friends had told him that the students would grill him about theological issues, particularly justification by faith, and he spent hours preparing himself to answer their questions. They didn’t mention the subject at all: What they wanted to know about was confession, and more the practice and experience than the theology. They really wanted to know what you did and why you did it, and how it felt to tell some man what could be your deepest secrets. They approached my friend as sick people approach someone who’s been cured of the same disease by an established but still alternative and fringe treatment.