Confession Question

I have a question: Why do people say “Bless me Father for I have sinned”…Shouldn’t it be “Forgive me Father for I have sinned”???

Actually, some years ago, we were taught that that wording has changed. I now say, “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen. It has been one month since my last confesssion. These are my sins…”

But to answer your question, I would say that it’s because you’re not asking the priest for forgiveness since it is Jesus who does the forgiving. But that’s just my guess.

I still say "Bless me father…-when did it changed? Never knew that.:shrug::confused:

I think around 1977 or 1978. It coincided with the introduction of face-to-face confession. They wanted to make it “less formal”, so we were told to start with the Sign of the Cross and just go right into how long it’s been since our last confession and then name our sins. We were taught that it was to make it more like a one-on-one conversation with the priest to make us feel more at ease (haha). They also instructed us to stop giving the frequency of our sins unless the priest specifically asks us. Maybe this was just in my diocese. I was in Catholic grade school and this is what the Sisters and lay teachers taught us. Anyway, that’s irrelevant to the OP’s question, because many people still say “Bless me, Father…” (I think my husband still does).

In any event, I think “Forgive me, Father” wouldn’t be proper because it is not the priest who forgives us, but Christ, through the priest.

Excellent answer!

I do say the changed version… The “bless me father version” I love more, but never taught of.

I came back to the catholic faith in 2005 after being a fallen-away catholic in a protestant denomination for 20-something years. The priests never corrected me on this form-never knew about this change :blush:

there is no rule, but yes the priest begins by blessing you so it is proper to ask the first, just as it is proper to ask the second. Just say something so the priest knows you are ready to begin and you don’t hold up the line.

As I recall you can use either “bless me Father…” or “In the name of the Father…” I use the latter.

I usually don’t say anything special to start, but then very often my confession is at the end of a spiritual direction session so we have already been talking for 45 minutes and he knows how long it’s been since my last confession so I only say it if I’ve been to confession to someone else since I last saw him, which is rare.

I dont believe in saying exact words. It SHOULD be forgive me and NOT bless me. Also, I dont care for the ending…I firmnly resolve to never sin again…huh? IMPOSSIBLE…I prefer…I will do my best to go as long as possible before sinning again as I am a fallen creature.

I was taught to say “Bless me father for I have sinned” or “Forgive me father for I have sinned”. The weird thing is according to information provided here I should have been taught to start with the sign of the cross. Honestly, it’s more personal preference than anything.

I think you have an attitude problem.
Also it is anyway not " I firmly resolve never to sin again" but “I firmly resolve to do my best not to sin again”.

The Priest is not God. God works through the priest In Persona Christi. You are asking forgiveness from God.

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