From an old prayerbook for priests which I’ve had since before my ordination. They are dense with old wisdom.
Here are two prayers, in Latin and English, for priests, for before and after they make confession their own confession.
I’ve added accent marks. In the translations I used an archaic style. The content might seem a little flowery in our age of tweets and dumbed-down prose, but… there’s nothing wrong with that! There are a couple tricky bits in the Latin, but I believe I’ve found the right solutions.
In this these troubling times, I suspect many priests, discerning the particular need and/or in good discipline, will seek to make their own confessions soon. I hope these prayers could be of use.
ORATIO ANTE CONFESSIONEM SACRAMENTALEM
Súscipe Confessiónem meam, piísime ac clementíssime Dómine Iesu Christe, única spes salútis ánimae méae, et da mihi, óbsecro, contritiónem cordis, et lácrimas óculis meis, ut dé?eam diébus ac nóctibus omnes neglegéntias meas cum humilitáte et puritáte cordis. Dómine, Deus meus, súscipe preces meas. Salvátor mundi, Iesu bone, qui te crucis morti dedísti, ut peccatóres salvos fáceres, réspice me míserum peccatórem invocántem nomen tuum, et noli sic atténdere malum meum, ut obliviscáris bonum tuum; et si commísi unde me damnáre potes, tu non amisísti, unde salváre soles. Parce ergo mihi, qui es Salvátor meus, et miserére peccatríci ánimae meae. Solve víncula eius, sana vúlnera. Emítte ígitur, piíssime Dómine, méritis puríssimae et immaculátae semper Víriginis Genitrícis tuae Maríae, et Sánctorum tuórum, lucem tuam, veritátem tuam in ánimam meam, quae omnes deféctus meos in veritáte mihi osténdat, quos confitéri me opórtet, atque iuvet et dóceat ipsos plene et contríto corde explicáre. Qui vivis et regnas Deus per ómnia saécula saeculórum. Amen.
Accept my confession, O most merciful and most gentle Lord Jesus Christ, sole hope of the salvation of my soul, and grant to me, Thy priest, I beg, contrition of heart and tears for my eyes, that day and night I might beweep all my failures with humility and purity of heart. O Lord, my God, accept my prayers. Savior of the world, good Jesus, who gave Thyself to the death of the Cross so that Thou mightst make sinners to be saved, look upon me, a miserable sinner invoking Thy Name, and heed not my evil in such a way that Thou shouldst forget Thy goodness. And if I have committed that by which Thou canst condemn me, Thou hast not lost that by which Thou art accustomed to save me. Spare me, therefore, Thou who art my Savior, and be merciful to my sinful soul. Free its bonds, heal its wounds. Hence, most merciful Lord, by the merits of Thy Mother, the most pure and immaculate ever-Virgin Mary, whom Thou didst entrust as a Mother especially to priests, and by the merits of Thy Saints, into my soul send forth Thy light, Thy truth which all my defects require, and assist and teach me to unfold them fully and with a contrite heart. Who livest and reignest, God, forever and ever. Amen.
ORATIO POST CONFESSIONEM
Sit tibi, Dómine, óbsecro, méritis beatae semper Vírginis Genetrícis tuae Maríae et ómnium Sanctórum, grata et accépta ista conféssio mea, et quidquid mihi défuit nunc, et de suf?ciéntia contritiónis, de puritáte et integritáte confessiónis, súppleat píetas et misericórdia tua et secúndum illam dignéris me habére plénius et perféctius absolútum in caelo. Qui vivis et regnas cum Deo Patre in unitáte Spíritus Sancti, Deus, per ómnia saécula saeculórum. Amen.
O Lord, I beseech Thee, by the merits of Thy Mother, the ever-Virgin Mary, and of all the saints, let this my confession to have been pleasing and acceptable to Thee, and whatsoever was now lacking in me and in the sufficiency of my contrition, and in the purity and completeness of my confession, may Thy mercy and compassion make whole and, thereafter, deign to hold me fully and perfectly absolved in Heaven. Who livest and reignest with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit, forever and ever. Amen.
This post is intended for bishops and priests and perhaps seminarians, for now to ponder.