Catholic Prayer Before Confession
Prayer Before Confession: Affectations and Resolutions Before Confession
My Lord and my all! I am confounded at the multitude and enormity of my offences against so good a God. I dare not presume even to lift up my eyes to heaven, much less to come near Thy altar, after so many treasons against Thee. Alas! What shall I now do, O Lord! What shall I say? With the humble publican, I will strike my breast, and cry unto Thee: “O God! Be merciful to me, a sinner.”
My sins exceed in number the hairs of my head, and the sands of the sea. But Thy mercies are still greater in number than my sins. O! Ocean of mercy! Have compassion on me, a poor miserable sinner, and make me, now at least, a true penitent.
Have mercy on me, O God! according to Thy great mercy, and according to the multitude of Thy tender mercies, blot out all my iniquities. Wash me yet more from my iniquities, and cleanse me from my sins; because I know my iniquities and my sins are always before me.
Lord! Thou hast said, there is joy in Heaven upon one sinner’s doing penance, more than upon ninety-nine just: Oh! Give me now grace to be a true penitent, indeed, that hereby Heaven may rejoice at my conversion.
Thou camest, O my dear Redeemer! not to call the just, but sinners, to repentance. Look down upon me, a poor miserable sinner, and draw me now powerfully to Thee by Thy grace.
I know Thou willest not the death of a sinner but that he be converted and live. Oh! Let me no longer remain dead in my sins! Oh! Let me now at least begin to live to Thee.
I am resolved, by Thy grace, never more to turn to my sins. Oh! rather let me die than offend Thee wilfully any more. I am resolved to avoid all evil company, and dangerous occasions; and to take proper measures for a thorough amendment of my life for the future. All this I resolve; but Thou knowest my frailty, O my God! and if Thou assist me not with Thy grace, all my resolution will prove ineffectual, and I shall be for ever miserable! Oh! Look to me, O Lord! that I may never betray Thee any more.
This Catholic Prayer Before Confession is similar to the Act of Contrition. We acknowledge our sinfulness to God, beg His forgiveness, trust in His mercy, and ask for help to live as sinless a life as we possibly can. May we always trust in the mercy of God and know that no matter what sins we commit, God is always willing to forgive us when we are sorry for the wrong we have done. May we always pray these words with a sincere heart: “God, be merciful to me, a sinner.”
You can follow this Examination of Conscience before you go to Confession.
For more Catholic Prayers, you may enjoy any of the following books: Catholic Prayers, Catholic Prayers for All Occasions, Mothers’ Manual prayer book, Fathers’ Manual prayer book, or Catholic Prayer Book for Children.