I have never worried about the words of absolution in confession before, but after coming to know that many of your readers worry about whether or not their sins have been forgiven due to the form variations, it got me thinking.
Tonight I attended the Lenten Reconciliation service at my parish. [Oh dear.] When I sat down with the priest, I somehow gathered up the courage to ask him upfront to use the words “I absolve you…” because the proper form for absolution would make me feel better. He obliged, although he wondered why I asked, and said “well I always say that.” [Oh dear oh dear…] Anyway, when it came time for absolution, he said, “God the Father of mercies, through the death and resurrection of his Son has reconciled the world to himself and sent the Holy Spirit among us for the forgiveness of sins; through the ministry of the Church may God give you pardon and peace, RESOLVE AND EMBRACE, and I absolve you from ALL THE SINS YOU SAID AND MAY YOU HAVE PEACE, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” Arrrrrggh!!!!
Perhaps I ought to make a coffee mug which has the words of absolution – in Latin and English side by side in the manner of my can. 915 mug. You could give to priests who don’t seem to be able to Say The Black and Do The Red.
Some priests, who don’t think you are very bright, imagine they have to make everything more “meaningful” all on their own authority.