with a thorough examination of conscience by consulting the
Catechism, the Precepts of the Church and other such sources. Then
when you are ready, approach the priest for Sacramental Confession.
penitent kneels in the confessional or, if there is no confessional,
the usual manner is for the penitent to kneel in a church pew or some
other suitable location, with the priest sitting in the pew behind or
sitting beside him.
penitent begins by saying:
me Father, for I have sinned.
the priest says:
Lord be in thy heart and upon thy lips, so that thou mayest worthily
confess all thy sins, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and
of the Holy Ghost.
penitent then makes his confession, preferably making first a general
confession, such as:
CONFESS to Almighty God, to the Blessed Mary Ever Virgin, to all the
Saints, and to thee, Father, that I have sinned exceedingly in
thought, word, and deed; by what I have done, and by what I have left
undone; and through my own fault.
penitent then continues by telling how long it has been since his
last confession, his state in life, and any particular sins he wishes
to confess. After this, he brings his confession to a close with
these words, or something similar:
these and all my other sins which I cannot now remember, I am
heartily sorry and intend to do better. I humbly ask pardon of God,
and of thee, Father, I ask for penance, advice, and absolution. Amen.
priest may then give a few words of advice and impose a penance. The
penance must be such that the Seal of Confession is not violated.
God have mercy upon thee, forgive thee thy sins, and bring thee to
everlasting life. Amen.
extending his right hand over the penitent, he continues:
Almighty and merciful Lord grant thee pardon, + absolution, and
remission of all thy sins. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, who hath left power to his Church to absolve all
sinners who truly repent and believe in him, of his great mercy,
forgive thee thine offenses; And by his authority committed unto me,
I absolve thee of all thy sins, in the name of the Father, and of the
+ Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.
the Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the merits of his most
holy mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary, and of all the Saints, may
whatsoever good thou hast done or evil thou has endured be unto thee
for the forgiveness of sins, the increase of grace, and the reward of
eternal life; And the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the +
Son, and the Holy Ghost be upon thee and remain with thee always. Amen.
case of reasonable and legitimate need, the only prayer that need be
said is the "Our Lord Jesus..."
the case of many penitents, they may say the General Confession
before entering the confessional, beginning with "Bless
me Father..." and then continuing from the
statement of how long it has been since their last confession.
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