The rite of reconciliation

Confession may be face-to-face or anonymous, with a screen between you and  the priest. If the Reconciliation Chapel door is open, go in and choose the option that is the most comfortable for you.  If the door is closed then someone else is inside celebrating the sacrament.

 ❶  The priest gives you a blessing or greeting.

 ❷  Make the sign of the cross and say, “Bless me, Father, for I have sinned. My last confession was [give the number of weeks, months or years] ago.”

 ❸  Confess all of your sins to the priest.  (If you are unsure or uneasy, tell him  and ask for help.)

 ❹  Say, “I am sorry for these and all of my sins.”

 ❺  The priest assigns a penance and offers advice to help you be a better  Catholic.

 ❻  Say an act of contrition, expressing your sorrow for your sins (see sample).


❼   The priest, acting in the person of Christ, then absolves you from your sins by placing his hands on or over your head. As he makes the sign of the cross over you, you can make the sign of the cross on yourself.


This is the Sacrament in which sins committed after Baptism are forgiven. It results in reconciliation with God and the Church. (US Catholic Catechism for Adults, Glossary)



Guide to Confession

What is the Sacrament of Penance & Reconciliation

Preparing for the Sacrament

Examination of Conscience

The Rite of Penance & Reconciliation

An Act of Contrition