Many Cultures; One Faith

Rite of Penance

Rite of Penance

The following are the basics of what takes place during Confession

There is flexibility in how you personalize Confession for your own needs and experience. Remember that it is not the priest you are confessing to and it is not the priest who absolves you of the guilt of your sins; it is Jesus Himself speaking through the priest, which is what makes this a true Sacrament and a healing encounter with Christ.

Penitent: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Priest: Invites penitent to have trust in God.

Penitent: Amen.

The Reading of the Word of God

The penitent then listens to a text of Scripture which tells about God's mercy and calls us to conversion

Confession of Sins and Acceptance of Satisfaction

The penitent speaks to the priest ina norma, conversational fashion. The penitent tells when he or she last celebrated the sacrament, then confesses his or her sins. The penitent then listens to any advice the priest may give and accepts the satisfaction from the priest. The penitent should ask any appropriate questions.

Prayer of the Penitent and Absolution

Before the absolution is given, the penitent expresses sorrow for sins in these or similar words:

My God, I am sorry for my sins with all my heart. In choosing to do wrong and failing to do good, I have sinned against you, whom I should love above all things. I firmly intend, with your help, to do penance, to sin no more, and to avoid whatever leads me to sin.

Our savior Jesus Christ suffered and died for us. In his name, my God, have mercy.

or Psalm 25:6-7

Remember, Lord, your compassion and mercy you showed long ago. Do not recall the sins and failings of my youth. In your mercy, remember me, Lord, because of your goodness.

or Psalm 51:4-5

Wash me from mt guilt and cleanse me of my sin. I acknowledge my offense; my sin is before me always.

or Luke 15:18, 18:13

Father, I have sinned against you and am not worthy to be called your child. Be merciful to me, a sinner.

The priest will give absolution, saying these or similar words:

God, the Father of mercies, through the death and resurrection of his Son, has reconciled the world to himself and sent the Holy Spirit among us for the forgiveness of sins, through the ministry of the Church may God give you pardon and peace, and I absolved you from your sins in the name of the Father,  and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

The penitent replies Amen.

Proclamation of Praise of God and Dismissal

Priest: Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good

Penitent: His mercy endures forever.

Then the penitent is dismissed by the priest

(Published by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops, 1974)