Sunday, January 17, 2010


More priests are begining to hear confessions in the extra ordinary form. Remember that under Summorum Pontificum, each priest can do this without any permission from anyone. All you have to do is ask for it. If the priest is not familiar with the latin please provide the below to him. You will be surprised how easy it is to get this started at your parish.

The penitent enters the confessional and says,
“Bless me Father, for I have sinned.”
The penitent makes the Sign of the Cross
while the priest says, “The Lord be in Thy
heart and on thy lips, that thou mayest rightly
confess thy sins. In the name of the Father †,
and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.”

The penitent tells the priest how long it has
been since his last Confession, then recites the
number and kind of his sins. The penitent
concludes with a statement to the effect of, “For these and all my
other sins, which I cannot presently remember, I am heartily
sorry.” ( or similar words)

The priest may ask some questions and give some advice. The
priest will assign a penance.
The priest then says: “Misereátur tui omnípotens Deus, et dimíssis
peccátis tuis, perdúcat te ad vitam ætérnam. Amen.”

(In English: “May almighty God have mercy on thee, and forgive
thee all thy sins, and bring thee to life everlasting. Amen.”)

Holding his right hand over the penitent, the priest says:
“Indulgéntiam, absolutiónem, et remissiónem peccatórum tuórum
tríbuat tibi omnípotens et miséricors Dóminus. Amen.”

(In English: “May the almighty and merciful God grant thee
indulgence, absolution, and remission of all thy sins. Amen.”)

Still holding his right hand over the penitent, the priest removes
any impediments to the validity of the absolution he is about to
give: “Dóminus noster Jesus Christus te absólvat; et ego
auctoritáte ipsíus te absólvo ab omni vínculo excommunicatiónis,
(suspensiónis,) et interdícti, in quantum possum et tu índiges.” If
the penitent is a layman, the word “suspensiónis” is omitted.

(The English translation: “May our Lord Jesus Christ absolve
thee; and by His authority I absolve thee from every bond of
excommunication, (suspension,) and interdict, in proportion to my
power and thy need.)

The priest recites the words of absolution while
both the priest and the penitent make the Sign
of the Cross.

(In English: “Thereupon, I absolve thee from
thy sins, in the name of the Father †, and of the
Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.”)

Finally, the priest says a prayer for the
remission of temporal punishment due for sins:
“Passio Dómini nostri Jesu Christi, mérita
Beátæ Maríæ Vírginis, et ómnium Sanctórum,
quidquid boni féceris, et mali sustinúeris, sint
tibi in remissiónem peccatórum, augméntum
grátiæ et præmium vitæ ætérnæ. Amen.”

(In English: “May the passion of our Lord
Jesus Christ, the merits of the Blessed Virgin
Mary, and of all the saints, whatever good you
shall have done, and evil you shall have
endured, be to you unto remission of sins,
increase of grace, and reward of eternal life.

Note that the Extraordinary Form of the Sacrament does not
require the penitent to make an Act of Contrition. The priest does
retain the option to request this, a sensible and laudable custom,
prior to giving absolution. It seems that most of the priests using the older rite of confession are indeed asking pennitents to say the act of contrition, so you will most likely be asked to say it. Usually while you are saying the act of contrition the priest will give absolution at the same time so he will be talking in latin while you are saying the act of contrition. When confession is over the priest will say " Go in peace your sins are forgiven" You thank the priest and leave.

Also note that canonically, a priest does not have the right to
remove every kind of bond of excommunication. That is reserved
to the diocesan Ordinary (bishop). Therefore, the prayer is careful
to say, “in proportion to my power”. A priest must refrain from
absolving difficult cases and refer the matter to a bishop. Please note that in the Atlanta diocese (and probably Savannah as well) the Bishop has granted priests the power to absolve from the excommunication of abortion.)

The concluding prayer for remission of temporal punishment is a
beautiful and appropriate follow-up to absolution, and is unique to
the Extraordinary Form.

Once you leave the confessional you will kneel in church and perform your pennance. Remember to also try and obtain indulgences to wash away the temporal punishment due to sins. One thing that often occurs where the latin mass is started is that people return to the Church after 20-30 years of absence so it is very important to get these people to confession. If they mention that they don't remember how to go to confession simply tell them to go in the confessional and say " Father I hven't been to confession in 20 years and I don't remember what to do" The priest will talk them through it. Also let them know that priests are highly honoured when they can hear a confession and bring a person back into the Church after such a long time.

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