O blessed Spirit of Truth,
you search the heart and test the inmost thoughts,
help me remember my sins,
and let me see them in your light.
Strengthen me also with courage to confess them truly,
hiding nothing, excusing nothing,
keeping back nothing in my heart.
In your mercy, pardon and absolve,
and thus heal me,
that I may arise and sin no more,
through the merits and for the sake
of Jesus Christ, my Lord and only Savior. Amen.

Source: Mozarabic Sacramentary, 7th Century

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954.


Mozarabic, ad.

For Forgiveness

Almighty God,
with Fatherly tenderness
receive those who flee from your anger,
that those who dread the scourge that comes from your majesty
may rejoice in your forgiveness;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Source: Gelasian Sacramentary

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954



Confession and Absolution

Most holy and merciful Father,
we acknowledge and confess in your presence
our sinful nature
which is quick to do evil and slow to do good,
and all our shortcomings and offenses against you.
You alone know how often we have sinned,
in wandering from your ways,
in wasting your gifts,
in forgetting your love.
O Lord, have pity on us.
We are ashamed and sorry for all things
in which we have displeased you.
Teach us to know our errors,
cleanse us from our secret faults,
and forgive our sins
for the sake of your dear Son, our Savior.
O most holy and loving Father,
send your Holy Spirit into our hearts
that we may henceforth live in your light
and walk in your ways
as we follow your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord.

Hear the gracious words of our Lord Jesus Christ to those who truly repent and turn to him:

God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28)

Whoever comes to me I will never cast out. (John 6:37)

The grace of our Lord Jesus + Christ be with you all. Amen.


Source: Modified from The Book of Common Worship, Henry Van Dyke, editor, Presbyterian Board of Publication and Sabbath-School Work, 1906, p. 3-4.

“Teach us to know our errors,” original has “teach us to hate our errors.” Change was made to better reflect Psalm 19:12.

“send your Holy Spirit into our hearts,” original has “send Thy purifying grace into our hearts.”

“as we follow your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” original has “According to the commandments of Jesus Christ our Lord.

A Confession of Sins

I, a poor sinner,
confess before you, my God and Creator,
that I have grievously sinned against you in many ways,
not only by gross outward sins,
but much more through inward natural blindness,
unbelief, doubts, despondency, impatience, pride,
covetousness, secret envy, hatred, malice,
and other sinful affections
which you see in me, my Lord and God,
and which, alas, I cannot always see in myself.
I repent of these, and cry to you for your mercy,
through your beloved Son Jesus Christ.

Source: Palatinate Liturgy, 1563, and Lutheran Liturgy of Wuerttemberg, 1536.

Translation based on Tercentenary Monument: In Commemoration of the Three Hundredth Anniversary of the Heidelberg Catechism M. Kieffer & Company, 1863

Keep Us Repentant, Keep Us Strong in Faith

HSBlessed Lord,
give us your Holy Spirit
to work in us daily a true and lasting repentance,
and lead us as repentant Christian people,
always willing to acknowledge, mourn and lament our sins,
yet also keep us steadfast and strong in our faith
in the forgiveness of sins
and in our purpose to amend our lives;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Source: Johann Eichhorn, d. 1564

Source of this version: Modified from Prayers from the collection of the late baron Bunsen, selected [from Versuch eines allgemeinen evangelischen Gesang – und Gebetbuchs] and tr. by C. Winkworth, 1871, p.106

Graphic: Church of the Atonement (Crooksville, Ohio), photo by  NheyobCreative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

You Wash Away Our Offences

6069369723_ee697728eb_z_dO Lord,
you wash away our offences.
Comfort us who call on you.
Blot out our transgressions,
and restore us
from the death of sin
to the land of the living;
through Christ our Lord.

Source: Sarum Breviary

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954

The prayer is a reflection on Psalm 51

Graphic: Page from an English Psalter, from Flickr, Walters Art Museum, Public Domain.



Confession of Sin

You see all things.
We have sinned against you
in thought, word, and deed.
Blot out our transgressions,
be merciful to us sinners,
and grant that our names may be found
written in the book of life,
for the sake of Christ Jesus our Savior.

Source: Nerses of Clajes (St. Nerses I)

Source of this version:  Prayers of the Early Church,  ed.  J. Manning Potts,  The Upper Room, Nashville, Tennessee, © 1953 (Public domain in the U.S.)

“Blot out our transgressions” is a reference to Psalm 51:1

“Written in the book of life” is a reference to Revelation 13:8