You may also contact the priest on duty or one of the other priests at any time.
Examine your conscience - that is, reflect on what sins you have committed.
When you meet the priest, begin by making the sign of the cross.
You may say, “Bless me Father for I have sinned” if you wish.
Tell the priest how long it is since your last confession - if you remember. If
you can’t remember, say that to the priest too. Remember he is not there to judge
you, but to bring the healing Sacrament of Reconciliation to you.
List the sins you have committed - be honest and clear - there is no need to tell
the whole story behind the sin either however.
Penance - the priest will suggest something for you to do or say as a response to
The priest will then ask you to pray the Act of Contrition (Act of Sorrow).
The priest will then give you absolution, to which you respond “Amen”.
The priest will then likely say something like “God has freed you from your sin.
Go in Peace.” To which you can respond: “Thanks be to God.”
Don’t forget to do your penance!
Examination of Conscience
I am the Lord your God. You shall not have strange gods before Me.
Have I loved God first and with all of my heart?
Have I been faithful to my daily prayers?
Have I given too much importance to any creature, activity, hobby, object or opinion?
Do I strive to develop a close relationship with God through prayer and reading and
encourage my children to do so?
Do I try to do the will of God or do I consult God in my decisions?
You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
Have I sworn by God’s name falsely, rashly or in slight and trivial matters? Have
I taken the name of Jesus or Christ in vain?
Have I angered others so as to make them swear or blaspheme God?
Remember to keep holy the Sabbath day.
Have I missed Mass on Sundays or Holy Days of obligation?
Have I been deliberately late for Mass on Sundays or Holy Days of obligation or left
early without good reason?
Have I done or commanded unnecessary servile work on Sunday or Holy Days of Obligation?
Have I received Holy Communion with love or rather with indifference?
Do I listen and pay good attention at mass?
Honour your father and your mother.
Have I been disobedient or disrespectful to my parents, or have I neglected or refused
to help them in their needs or old age?
Have I shown irreverence to others in positions of authority?
Have I mistreated my spouse or my children?
Have I given them bad example?
You shall not kill.
Have I held on to hatred? Is there anyone I cannot forgive?
Have I desired or hastened the death or bodily injury of anyone?
Have I desired revenge?
Have I caused division between others?
Have I fought with anyone physically or verbally?
Have I wished evil on anyone?
Have I intended or attempted to injure or mistreat others?
Is there anyone with whom I refuse to speak, or against whom I bear a grudge?
Have I taken pleasure in anyone’s misfortunes?
10. Do I drink too much or too often or used illicit drugs?
Sixth and Ninth Commandments:
You shall not commit adultery. You shall not covet your neighbour’s wife.
Have I committed adultery or fornication (premarital sex)?
Have I practiced birth control (by pills, devices)?
Have I sinned impurely by myself (masturbation)?
Have I entertained or taken pleasure in impure thoughts?
Have I done anything to provoke or occasion impure thoughts or desires in others
deliberately or through carelessness or dress?
Have I watched suggestive movies, TV programs, or Internet pornography or permitted
my children to do so?
Have I told indecent stories or used indecent language?
Have I abused anyone for my own sexual gratification?
Seventh and Tenth Commandments:
You shall not steal. You shall not covet your neighbour’s goods.
Have I stolen anything? What or how much?
Have I been careless with other people’s money or goods?
Have I cheated or others?
Have I refused or neglected to pay any debts?
Have I acquired anything known to be stolen?
Have I gambled too often or excessively?
Have I cheated my employer of an honest day’s work?
Have I cheated my employees of their wages?
Have I refused or neglected to help anyone in urgent need?
Have I been jealous of what another has?
Have I been mean with my possessions?
Have I supported the poor or charitable organisations?
You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.
Do I exaggerate or tell lies?
Have I rashly judged anyone?
Have I engaged in gossip or injured the good name of another by revealing true but
Have I disclosed another´s sins?
Have I caused division, (i.e. reporting something unfavourable said of someone by
another so as to create enmity between them)?
Am I, without necessity, critical, negative or ever uncharitable in my talk?
Prayer Before Confession Dear Jesus, help me to make a good Confession, help me to
find out my sins, help me to be sorry for them,help me to make up my mind not to
sin again. Have mercy on me, O Lord, and forgive me. Mary, my mother, pray for
Prayer before Confession
O my God, help me to remember the times when I didn’t live as Jesus asked me to.
Help me to be sorry and to try again. Amen
Act of Contrition O my God, I am very sorry for all my sins, because they offend you
who are so good,and with your help I will not sin again. Amen
Act of Sorrow
O my God, I thank You for loving me, I am sorry for all my sins; for not loving others
and not loving You. Help me to live like Jesus and not sin again. Amen
Confiteor I confess to almighty God, and to you, my brothers and sisters that I have
greatly sinned in my thoughts and in my words, in what I have done, and in what I
have failed to do, through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault;
therefore I ask blessed Mary, ever virgin, all the angels and saints, and you,
my brothers and sisters, to pray for me to the Lord our God.
Prayer After Confession Dear Jesus, thank you for helping me to make a good Confession,
and thank you for taking away my sins. Help me, dear Jesus, never to offend you again.
Mary, my mother, pray to Jesus for me. My dear Angel Guardian help me.
Prayer after Confession
O my God, thank you for forgiving me. Help me to love others. Help me to live as
Jesus asked me to.