The Reconciliation
of a Penitent




Form One

The Penitent begins

Bless me, for I have sinned.

The Priest says

The Lord be in your heart and upon your lips that you may
truly and humbly confess your sins: In the Name of the
Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Penitent

I confess to Almighty God, to his Church, and to you, that
I have sinned by my own fault in thought, word, and deed, in
things done and left undone; especially __________. For these
and all other sins which I cannot now remember, I am truly
sorry. I pray God to have mercy on me. I firmly intend
amendment of life, and I humbly beg forgiveness of God and
his Church, and ask you for counsel, direction, and absolution.

Here the Priest may offer counsel, direction, and comfort.



Reconciliation    447




The Priest then pronounces this absolution

Our Lord Jesus Christ, who has left power to his Church to
absolve all sinners who truly repent and believe in him, of
his great mercy forgive you all your offenses; and by his
authority committed to me, I absolve you from all your sins:
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy
Spirit. Amen.

or this

Our Lord Jesus Christ, who offered himself to be sacrificed
for us to the Father, and who conferred power on his Church
to forgive sins, absolve you through my ministry by the grace
of the Holy Spirit, and restore you in the perfect peace of
the Church. Amen.

The Priest adds

The Lord has put away all your sins.

Penitent    Thanks be to God.

The Priest concludes

Go (or abide) in peace, and pray for me, a sinner.


Declaration of Forgiveness
to be used by a Deacon or Lay Person


Our Lord Jesus Christ, who offered himself to be sacrificed
for us to the Father, forgives your sins by the grace of the
Holy Spirit. Amen.



448    Reconciliation




Form Two

The Priest and Penitent begin as follows

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your loving-kindness;
    in your great compassion blot out my offenses.
Wash me through and through from my wickedness,
    and cleanse me from my sin.
For I know my transgressions only too well,
    andmy sin is ever before me.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One,
    have mercy upon us.

Penitent    Pray for me, a sinner.

Priest

May God in his love enlighten your heart, that you may
remember in truth all your sins and his unfailing mercy.
Amen.

The Priest may then say one or more of these or other appropriate verses
of Scripture, first saying

Hear the Word of God to all who truly turn to him.

Come to me, all ye that travail and are heavy laden, and I
will refresh you.    Matthew 11:28

God so loved the world, that he gave his only-begotten Son,
to the end that all that believe in him should not perish, but
have everlasting life.    John 3:16

This is a true saying, and worthy of all men to be received,
that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.    
1 Timothy 1:15



Reconciliation    449




If any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus
Christ the righteous; and he is the perfect offering for our
sins, and not for ours only, but for the sins of the whole
world.    1 John 2:1-2

The Priest then continues

Now, in the presence of Christ, and of me, his minister,
confess your sins with a humble and obedient heart to
Almighty God, our Creator and our Redeemer.

The Penitent says

Holy God, heavenly Father, you formed me from the dust in
your image and likeness, and redeemed me from sin and
death by the cross of your Son Jesus Christ. Through the
water of baptism you clothed me with the shining garment of
his righteousness, and established me among your children in
your kingdom. But I have squandered the inheritance of your
saints, and have wandered far in a land that is waste.

Especially, I confess to you and to the Church  .  .  .

Here the Penitent confesses particular sins.

Therefore, O Lord, from these and all other sins I cannot
now remember, I turn to you in sorrow and repentance.
Receive me again into the arms of your mercy, and restore me
to the blessed company of your faithful people; through him
in whom you have redeemed the world, your Son our Savior
Jesus Christ. Amen.

The Priest may then offer words of comfort and counsel.

Priest

Will you turn again to Christ as your Lord?

Penitent    I will.



450    Reconciliation




Priest

Do you, then, forgive those who have sinned against you?

Penitent    I forgive them.

Priest

May Almighty God in mercy receive your confession of
sorrow and of faith, strengthen you in all goodness, and by
the power of the Holy Spirit keep you in eternal life. Amen.

The Priest then lays a hand upon the penitent's head (or extends a hand
over the penitent), saying one of the following

Our Lord Jesus Christ, who offered himself to be sacrificed
for us to the Father, and who conferred power on his Church
to forgive sins, absolve you through my ministry by the grace
of the Holy Spirit, and restore you in the perfect peace of the
Church. Amen.

or this

Our Lord Jesus Christ, who has left power to his Church to
absolve all sinners who truly repent and believe in him, of
his great mercy forgive you all your offenses; and by his
authority committed to me, I absolve you from all your sins:
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy
Spirit. Amen.

The Priest concludes

Now there is rejoicing in heaven; for you were lost, and
are found; you were dead, and are now alive in Christ Jesus
our Lord.  Go (or abide) in peace.  The Lord has put away all
your sins.

Penitent    Thanks be to God.



Reconciliation    451




Declaration of Forgiveness
to be used by a Deacon or Lay Person


Our Lord Jesus Christ, who offered himself to be sacrificed
for us to the Father, forgives your sins by the grace of the
Holy Spirit. Amen.






























452    Reconciliation