What Do I Say in Confession?

This is an excerpt from “Come Clean: A Teen Guide to Reconciliation

I stepped into the confessional and kneeled down at the kneeler. The priest opened the partition and I froze. I could not for the life of me remember what to say to the priest. Luckily he sensed my nervousness and walked me through the whole thing.

Because I know that sometimes we forget what to say I've provided a basic structure of what you should say at the beginning of your confession. I hope it helps!

YOU: Forgive me father, for I have sinned. It has been ___ long since my last confession and these are my sins: (here you will confess your sins to the priest).

After this (and possibly a short time of counsel and advice from the priest), he will ask you pray the Act of Contrition (you will find two different ones below that you can use). The priest will then give you your penance and absolve you of all your sins.

Act of Contrition

O my God, I am sorry for having offended you. In choosing to do wrong and failing to do good, I have offended you whom I should love above all things. I firmly intend, with your help, to do penance, to sin no more, and to avoid whatever leads me to sin. Our Savior Jesus Christ suffered and died for us. In His name, my God, have mercy.

Amen.

Or

O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended Thee, and I detest all my sins, because I dread the loss of heaven, and the pains of hell; but most of all because they offend Thee, my God, Who are all good and deserving of all my love. I firmly resolve, with the help of Thy grace, to confess my sins, to do penance, and to amend my life. Amen.


Come Clean is a very small book that packs a very big punch. It helps you understand how the Sacrament of Reconciliation can transform your life. You will love this book whether you’re scared of Confession or feel like a pro. Get it in the Life Teen Store today!

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