Preparing to receive Holy Communion
Before confession, each person must attempt to recall all of his sins, voluntary and involuntary, must attentively go over his life in order, to the extent possible, to recall all of his sins, not only those committed since his last confession, but also those past sins which through forgetfulness have not been confessed. Then, with compunction and with a contrite heart, approach the Cross and the Gospel, and begin to confess your sins.
(1) Confess your sins honestly, remembering that you are disclosing them not to a man but to God Himself, Who already knows your sins, but wishes you to admit to them. There is no reason to feel shame before your spiritual father. He is a person just like you. Because he knows human weakness and man's propensity to sin he cannot be your judge. Are you embarrassed before your spiritual father because you are afraid to lose his good opinion of you? To the contrary, your spiritual father will love you all the more, seeing your sincere confession. Moreover, if you are ashamed to disclose your sins to a single spiritual father, then how will you be able to bear the shame if you have not cleansed yourself of your sins through true confession, and those sins are laid open before God Himself, before the angels and before everyone, acquaintance and stranger alike?
(2) Confess all of your sins in full, each sin separately. St. John Chrysostom states, "One must not only say: I have sinned, or I am a sinner, but one must declare each form of sin." I.e., one must list each sin. St. Basil the Great states, "Revelation of sins is subject to the same law as the relating of physical ills..." The sinner is spiritually ill, and the spiritual father is a physician or healer. It follows that you must confess or relate your sins to your spiritual father in the same way that a physically ill person relates his symptoms to a physician, thereby hoping to be healed.
(3) Do not mention others during confession. Do not complain about anyone, for what kind of confession would that be? Instead of confession, it would be a condemnation, and thus, yet another sin.
(4) In confession, do not attempt to justify yourself in any way, blaming weakness, habit, etc. The more you justify yourself during confession, the less you will be justified by God, while the more you denounce, condemn and accuse yourself, the more you will be justified by God.
(5) When questioned by your spiritual father, do not say "I do not remember, perhaps I am not guilty of that." God directed us to always be mindful of our sins. In order not to justify ourselves by forgetfulness, we must confess as often as possible. Those who out of carelessness confess infrequently, and as a result forget some of their sins, are themselves to blame, and therefore cannot hope to be absolved of the sins not confessed. Thus it is imperative that we strive to remember all of our sins. If someone is in our debt, we are sure to keep it in mind. Yet we forget our own debt before God! Does this not betray on our part a lack of concern for our soul?
(6) Unless asked by the spiritual father, do not talk about sins you have not committed, or about what you have not done. That is to say, do not emulate the Pharisee in the Gospel, who only praised himself, and did not confess his sins; thereby he only caused his condemnation to be greater.
(7) We must confess with sorrow and a contrite heart the sins by which we have grieved our Lord God. It is not good that many relate their sins matter-of-factly, without any remorse. They speak as if engaged in some casual conversation. Even worse, some allow themselves to laugh during confession. These are all signs of a lack of repentance. By confessing in this manner, we are not cleansed of sins, but only increase them.
(8) Finally, confess your sins with faith in Jesus Christ and with hope in His mercy. Only with faith and hope in Jesus Christ can we receive forgiveness of sins. Without faith, we can in no wise be forgiven. Note the example of Judas the betrayer.
This, then is how we must confess in order to receive from our Lord God remission of sins. "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us of all unrighteousness...." (1 John 1:9)
Parish Life, March, 1998
Confession That Leads the Inward Man To Humility
Turning my eyes carefully upon myself and watching the course of my inward state, I have verified by experience that I do not love God, that I have no religious belief, and that I am filled with pride and sensuality. All this I actually find in myself as a result of detailed examination of my feelings and conduct.
And so, I do not love God. For if I loved God, I should be continually thinking about Him with heartfelt joy. Every thought of God would give me gladness and delight. On the contrary, I much more often and much more eagerly think about earthly things, and thinking about God is labor and dryness. If I loved God, then talking with Him in prayer would be my nourishment and delight and would draw me to unbroken communion with Him. But, on the contrary, I not only find no delight in prayer, but even find it an effort. I struggle with reluctance, I am enfeebled by sloth, and am ready to occupy myself eagerly with any unimportant trifle, if only it shortens prayer and keeps me from it. My time slips away unnoticed in futile occupations, but when I am occupied with God, when I put myself into His presence every hour seems like a year.
If one person loves another, he thinks of him throughout the day without ceasing, he pictures him to himself, he cares for him, and in all circumstances his beloved friend is never out of his thoughts. But I, throughout the day, scarcely set aside even a single hour in which to sink deep down into meditation upon God, to inflame my heart with love of Him, while I eagerly give up twenty-three hours as fervent offerings to the idols of my passions. I am forward in talk about frivolous matters and things which degrade the spirit; that gives me pleasure. But in the consideration of God I am dry, bored and lazy.
Even if I am unwillingly drawn by others into spiritual conversation, I try to shift the subject quickly to one which pleases my desires. I am tirelessly curious about novelties, about civic affairs and political events; I eagerly seek the satisfaction of my love of knowledge in science and art, and in ways of getting things I want to possess. But the study of the Law of God, the knowledge of God and of religion, make little impression on me, and satisfy no hunger of my soul. I regard these things not only as a nonessential occupation for a Christian, but in a casual way as a sort of side-issue with which I should perhaps occupy my spare time, at odd moments.
To put it briefly, if love for God is recognized by the keeping of His commandments: If ye love Me, keep My commandments, says our Lord Jesus Christ. And I not only do not keep them, but even make little attempt to do so, then in absolute truth the conclusion follows that I do not love God. That is what Basil the Great says: "The proof that a man does not love God and His Christ less in the fact that he does not keep His commandments."
I do not love my neighbor either. For not only am I unable to make up my mind to lay down my life for his sake (according to the Gospel), but I do not even sacrifice my happiness, well being and peace for the good of my neighbor. If I did love him as myself, as the Gospel bids, his misfortunes would distress me also, his happiness would bring delight to me too. But, on the contrary, I listen to curious, unhappy stories about my neighbor and I am not distressed; I remain quite undisturbed or what is still worse, I find a sort of pleasure I them. Bad conduct on the part of my brother I do not cover up with love, but proclaim abroad with ensure. His well being, honor and happiness do not delight me as my own, and, as if they were something quite alien to me, give me no feeling of gladness. What is more, they subtly arouse in me feelings of envy or contempt.
I have no religious belief. Neither in immortality nor in the Gospel. If I were firmly persuaded and believed without doubt that beyond the grave lies eternal life and recompense for the deeds of this life, I should be continually thinking of this. The very idea of immortality would terrify me and I should lead this life as a foreigner who gets ready to enter his native land. On the contrary, I do not even think about eternity, and I regard the end of this earthly life as the limit of my existence.
The secret thought nestles within me: Who knows what happens at death? If I say I believe in immortality, then I am speaking about my mind only, and my heart is far removed from a firm conviction about it. That is openly witnessed to by my conduct and my constant care to satisfy the life of the senses. Were the Holy Gospel taken into my heart in faith, as the Word of God, I should be continually occupied with it, I should study it, find delight in it and with deep devotion fix my attention upon it. Wisdom, mercy, love, are hidden in it; it would lead me to happiness, I should find gladness in the study of the Law of God day and night. In it I should find nourishment like my daily bread and my heart would be drawn to the keeping of its laws. Nothing on earth would be strong enough to turn me away from it.
On the contrary, if now and again I read or hear the Word of God, yet even so it is only from necessity or from a general love of knowledge, and approaching it without any very close attention, I find it dull and uninteresting. I usually come to the end of the reading without any profit, only too ready to change over to secular reading in which I take more pleasure and find new and interesting subjects.
I am full of pride and sensual self-love. All my actions confirm this. Seeing something good in myself, I want to bring it into view, or to pride myself upon it before other people or inwardly to admire myself for it. Although I display an outward humility, yet I ascribe it all to my own strength and regard myself as superior to others, or at least no worse than they. If I notice a fault in myself, I try to excuse it, I cover it up by saying, "I am made like that" or "I am not to blame." I get angry with those who do not treat me with respect and consider them unable to appreciate the value of people. I brag about my gifts: my failures in any undertaking I regard as a personal insult. I murmur, and I find pleasure in the unhappiness of my enemies. If I strive after anything good it is for the purpose of winning praise, or spiritual self-indulgence, or earthly consolation. In a word, I continually make an idol of myself and render uninterrupted service, seeking in all things the pleasures of the senses, and nourishment for my sensual passions and lusts.
Going over all this I see myself as proud, adulterous, unbelieving, without love to God and hating my neighbor. What state could be more sinful? The condition of the spirits of darkness is better than mine. They, although they do not love God, hate men, and live upon pride, yet at least believe and tremble. But I? Can there be a doom more terrible than that which faces me, and what sentence of punishment will be more sever than that upon the careless and foolish life that I recognize in myself?
Examination of Conscience
I, a sinful soul, confess to our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ, all of my evil acts which I have done, said or thought from baptism even unto this present day.
First Torment: Idle Speech
Have you spoken without thinking, or spoken too much?
Have you spoken anything that is impure, or shameless, or without need or order, or unreasonable, or unclean?
Have you thought or said angry words or foul words?
Have you participated with or sung worldly shameless songs in word or thought?
Have you laughed unnecessarily or excessively?
Have you laughed at things that you shouldn't have laughed at?
Have you acted too silly?
Second Torment: Lying
Have you kept the vows of your baptism?
Have you failed to keep oaths or promises to God?
Have pronounced the name of God without reverence?
Have you falsely confessed your sins?
Were you insincere about, belittled, justified, or kept silent about your sins during confession?
Have you lied?
Have you been sly or secretly mischievous?
Have you been deceptive or hypocritical?
Have you honestly obeyed traffic laws?
Have been argumentative or stubborn?
Third Torment: Spoke evil of others
Have you spread rumors or gossiped in thought or in word?
Have you slandered anyone intending to injure the reputation of another?
Have you given bad ideas or words to people?
Have you laughed at another's deficiencies or misfortunes?
Have you maligned or treated anyone with malice or shown hatred toward, abused, wronged, or injured anyone?
Have you condemned anyone? Have you declared others unfit?
Have you made fun of or mocked people in thought, word, or action?
Have you reproached anyone or reflected on anyone abusively?
Have you taunted, teased, or tempted anyone?
Have you insulted anyone?
Fourth Torment: Gluttony
Have you eaten before making the sign of the cross?
Have you eaten when you were not hungry?
Have you eaten too much at one time or became too full during the fasts?
Have you eaten without having given thanks to God?
Have you eaten like a slob or eaten out of control?
Have you consumed too many alcoholic beverages to the point of being drunk?
Have you respected the feasts and fasts as much as you should?
Have you broken the fasts on purpose?
Have you not looked forward to the fasts, taking in mind the true meaning and purpose of them?
Have you eaten too many sweet foods for the enjoyment of them or had a love of sweets?
Have you had gluttonous fantasies?
Fifth Torment: Sloth
Have you taken efforts to remember and extensively learn the Commandments of God and the precepts of the Holy Fathers by reading spiritual things?
Have you kept your physical and spiritual passions in check all the time?
Have you had a general carelessness about doing things having to do with the salvation of your soul?
Have you devoted yourself to the comforts of life?
Have you lacked endurance towards illnesses and sorrows by not struggling against your passions as much as you should?
Have you been idle?
Have you not worked as hard as you could have, or fallen asleep at work?
Have you not wanted to get out of bed?
Have you complained about having to work, or attend long services, or say long prayers?
Have you cared to praise and thank God as much as you could have throughout the day?
Have you failed to try to always to keep your mind on serving God?
Have you dwelled upon your previous sins?
Have you fallen into despondency, or given up hope, or stopped having faith in God that He can and will change you?
Have you forgotten to pray at certain times during the day?
Have you rushed through or not said your morning and evening prayers whole-heartedly?
Have you attended the services of the Church completely?
Have you been fully prepared to go to Church to worship, or have you gone to Church only half-heartedly, lazily, and carelessly?
Have you conversed during the services about things not having to do with the service?
Have you paid complete attention during the services?
Have you let your mind wander, or daydreamed, or thought upon other ungodly things during prayer or services?
Have you left the Church before the dismissal and blessing?
Have you forced yourself to do good at all times?
Have you had a weak will?
Sixth Torment: Stealing
Have you stolen anything or thought seriously about stealing something?
Seventh Torment: Avarice & Love of Money
Have you loved riches?
Have you been content with what God has given you?
Have you wished that you had more money than you do?
Have you acquired unnecessary things, or had an immoderate attachment to material things?
Have you been too concerned or caught up with material things?
Have you been too concerned with things having to do with the flesh?
Have you bought things with money you should have tithed?
Have you been greedy or selfish?
Have you worried about money or financial circumstances instead of putting your trust in God?
Have you had fantasies about material wealth?
Eighth Torment: Usury
Have you gained riches by exploiting people?
Have you accepted bribes?
Have you acquired something that belonged to another?
Ninth Torment: Injustice
Have you judged anyone?
Have you acquitted the guilty and condemned the innocent all for the sake of gain?
Have you been unjust in anyway?
Have you accused an innocent person of committing an act that they did not do?
Tenth Torment: Envy
Have you envied anyone or been jealous about another?
Eleventh Torment: Pride
Have you been prideful?
Have you thought yourself better than others?
Have you considered yourself worthy while considering others unworthy?
Have you had a high opinion of yourself in any way?
Have you talked down to anyone?
Have you focused on other people's faults rather than your own?
Have you focused the shortcomings of others while trying to conceal your virtues?
Have you been critical of other people or criticized anyone?
Have you been arrogant, vain, or conceited?
Have you relied completely on yourself rather than God?
Have you bragged or boasted of things that you have accomplished?
Have you loved praise and honors?
Have you put on airs?
Have you been prideful of the good deeds that you have done?
Have you failed to give proper honor or obey your parents or superiors appointed by God?
Have you been disobedient?
Have you thought yourself self-important?
Have you been self-willed instead of trying always to do the will of God?
Have you been self-righteous?
Have you justified your sins to yourself?
Have you disregarded the counseling of your conscience?
Have you failed to confess any of your sins through negligence or false pride?
Have you been impatient or anxious about anything in which you shouldn't be that way about?
Have you been prejudiced towards anyone for any reason?
Have you had prideful fantasies of power, fame, or glory?
Twelfth Torment: Anger & Ruthlessness
Have you felt anger?
Have you said anything unkind towards anyone knowing your words would hurt them?
Have you harmed or hurt anyone's feelings in any way?
Have you carried on arguments with anyone about anything in your head?
Thirteenth Torment: Bearing Grudges
Have you nurtured evil thoughts against anyone?
Have you returned evil for evil?
Have you remembered wrongs anyone did to you in the past?
Have you bore any grudges instead of understanding, loving, and forgiving?
Have you kept in mind when anyone made offenses towards you?
Have you imagined ways you could have revenge on anyone?
Fourteenth Torment: Murder
Have you wounded anyone is some way?
Have you had any violent or destructive thoughts?
Have you had any harmful thoughts aimed towards others?
Have you wished evil upon anyone?
Have you been angry with people without a just cause?
Fifteenth Torment: Magic, sorcery, poisoning, and incantations
Have you thought & dwelled about magic and things relating to magic?
Have you believed Holy things having some sort of magical properties?
Sixteenth Torment: Fornication
Have you had any sensual, lustful, or carnal thoughts?
Have you daydreamed about amorous and lustful things and found them sweet?
Have you made impure glances?
Have you touched yourself in a lustful or passionate way that was pleasing or arousing?
Have you had blasphemously lustful thoughts about saints and holy people?
Have you been unchaste in thought, word, or deed?
Have you awoken from lustful dreams and found them pleasing to think about?
Have you had fantasies of lust or fornication?
Seventeenth Torment: Adultery
Have you had lustful thoughts about or actions with married people?
Eighteenth Torment: Sodomy
Have you sinned against your nature?
Nineteenth Torment: Heresies
Have you received Holy Communion without having as much humility or fear of God as you should?
Have you loved and feared the Lord always?
Have you turned away from the Orthodox confession of faith by apostatizing and agreeing with false doctrines or beliefs?
Have you lacked faith?
Have you doubted or had misconceptions about the faith?
Have denied holy things or had a negative attitude towards them?
Have you been grateful for all of God's great and unceasing gifts, His mercy, His long-suffering, and His providence?
Have you fulfilled the Holy Commandments of God, the canons, and the rules of the Church?
Have you blasphemed or sworn in thought or word?
Have you thought curse words during prayer?
Have you turned words of prayer into profane words or filthy concepts?
Have you feared man instead of God?
Have you been too attached to parents, relatives, and friends?
Have you answered the telephone during prayer?
Twentieth Torment: Lack of Compassion & Cruelty of the Heart
Have you lacked mercy, forgiveness, compassion, and love for anyone?
Have you felt hatred toward anyone?
Have you been unfriendly or cruel to anyone?
Have you ridiculed anyone?
Have you rejoiced at the misfortunes of others?
Have you had abusive or violent thoughts?
Have you been polite and friendly while driving on the roads and highways?
I have sinned in deed, word, and thought, voluntarily and involuntarily, knowingly and unknowingly, in knowledge and in ignorance, willingly and unwillingly, thoughtfully and thoughtlessly, by day and by night, and it is impossible to enumerate all of my sins because of their multitude. But I truly repent of these and all others not mentioned by me because of my forgetfulness and I ask that they be forgiven through the abundance of the mercy of God.
PREPARATION FOR CONFESSION (Red Prayer Book version)
O Lord God, my Father! I, thine unworthy and all-sinful son, have transgressed Thy holy commandments and have required, taken, my part of Thy possessions; thus, hast Thou, my all-good Father, given me an immortal soul, a strong and capable body, a pure mind, and healthy members - but I, a miserable man, though redeemed by the precious blood of Christ, and though oft sanctified by the Holy Sacraments, have, willingly erred from Thy commandments, lived corruptly, despising all Thy gifts. Thus, I have anew offended and angered Thee, the merciful Father and Lord. I am not worthy to be called Thy son, I dare not look upon Thy glory, and, unfaithful, I have not fulfilled Thy will. O Lord, my God! what shall I do? Where shall I hide from Thine anger? Thou seest all, Thou seest my great sin, Thou knowest my conscience. But I will rise, return to my all-good and merciful Father, and humbly fall at His feet and cry out: O Father, I have sinned against Heaven and before Thee, and am not worthy to be called Thy son, nor worthy of Thy fatherly mercy. Thou art not only all-just, but also all-merciful; have mercy on me a fallen one, and an erring man. O receive me again if not as a son, then as one of Thy hired servants.
O merciful Father! Look down again upon me weeping, penitent at heart and a prodigal son. Forgive my light-mindedness and remit my transgression, and bountifully have mercy on me! O Lord Father! Give not for me the fattened calf, nor the beautiful robe - I pray thee grant unto me but Thy grace and Thy fatherly love. I desire naught, but solely Thy grace and the forgiveness of the sins which I have willingly committed; grant help unto me, O merciful Lord, that I may, at this hour penitently receive forgiveness and never again anger the gracious Father, Amen.
Receive, O my merciful Lord God, this my humble confession for Thou O Lord Jesus and Savior, art the hope of my soul; O Lord, grant perfect sorrow unto my heart, and tears unto my eyes, that I may, night and day, in purity and humility, contritely and everlastingly, weep over all my transgressions. Lead me, O Lord, to a blessed ending, and direct me unto true repentance; grant unto me a just confession of my sins. O Lord, receive the contrition of my repentful heart and have mercy on me.
Open, O my Lord God, my contrite heart and illumine my mind, that I may, remembering all my transgressions and their circumstances, confess them orderly unto Thee and Thy priest, and thus obtain absolution and pardon from Thee, the merciful Father, Amen.
Lord and our God, Thou desirest not the death of a sinner, but seekest his conversion unto life and receivest all sinners prostrate before Thee unto repentance; receive me now repentful of my transgressions and grant unto me a hearty contrition and direct my conscience, that I may divinely hopeful confess my sins before the glory of Thy all terrible Throne; thus may Thine all-honorable and majestic name be glorified in me, of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages, Amen.
Examination of Conscience
AGAINST THE 1st COMMANDMENT:
Have you fulfilled thoroughly your prayers in the morning, before meals, after meals and at night? Have you thought something or acted contrarily when you were at prayer? When the church bells were rung, did you pray? Have you removed your hat when passing by the church or by a Cross, and made the sign of the cross? Did you strive to know prayer, the Christian doctrine and Catechism? Have you borne patiently any travail? Have you calumniated God? During the day have you reflected on the goodness of God? Have you behaved yourself correctly while in Church; have you while therein talked or laughed? Have you doubted at anytime, some truth of the Holy Faith - which one was it - and why? Have you aroused any such doubt in any other person? Have you listened to the impious talks of infidels, of apostates, or of sinful people against the Holy Faith? Have you read any atheistic, heretical books, publications contrary to the Orthodox Faith? Have you given any such books to be read by others? Have you reflected that the reading of such literature is both a perilous and an impious deed? Have you ever yielded yourself to fortune tellers and the like? Have you recommended such things to others?
AGAINST THE 2nd COMMANDMENT:
Have you always with reverence uttered the name of God, of Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Mother, and of other saints? Do you curse or swear? Have you ever spoken jokingly of sacred things? Have you abused God's name when bearing witness? Have you fulfilled your promises unto God?
AGAINST THE 3rd COMMANDMENT:
Did you go to Church on Sundays, and Holydays, for matins, for Liturgy and for vespers? Have you come late to Church because of laziness? Did you strive to behave piously while in Church? Have you worked on Sundays or Holydays without necessity? Have you, at any time, spent Sunday, a Holyday, or the Lenten times at dances, games or in taverns? Have you at such places ever scandalized others? Have you encouraged others to such negligence of the Holydays?
AGAINST THE 4th COMMANDMENT:
Have I always honored and loved my parents? When asked by them to do something, did I gladly do it? Have I obeyed them? Have I sought either with good behavior or learning, to bring happiness unto them? Have I prayed for them daily? Have I ensaddened or angered them? Have I quarreled with them or derided them? Have I loved my brothers and sisters? Have I quarreled with them? Have I respected the churchly, the civil authorities?
AGAINST THE 5th COMMANDMENT:
Have I damaged my health with animosity? Have I dealt insultingly or arrogantly with others? Have I fought or quarreled with others? Have I given an evil example unto others? Have I unnecessarily exposed my life to danger? Have I tortured animals?
AGAINST 6th/9th COMMANDMENTS:
Have I always fulfilled my obligations? Have I willfully thought of impure and shameful things? When such lewd thoughts came to my mind did I seek to dispel them? Have I taken pleasure in them? Have I willfully looked upon shameful things? Have I spoken of such shameful matters? Have I sung any such songs? When others discoursed of such shameful things, did I listen to them with pleasure? Have I relayed filthy jokes? Have I looked at shameful pictures? Have I read evil books? Have I, either with others or with myself, desired or done any shameful act? Have I kept companionship with evil friends? Have I scandalized others with shameful words, deeds, songs or acts? Have I encouraged the wife of my neighbor into sin? Do I live with a common-law woman? While dressing myself, or undressing, and while bathing, have I behaved decently? Have I considered that evil though done secretly, is seen by God and that on judgment day all will be revealed?
AGAINST 7th/10th COMMANDMENTS:
Have I ever stolen anything or desired to steal anything? When finding something, did I strive to return it to its owner? Have I received from anyone stolen things? Have I willfully damaged the properties of another, such as his garden, his farm, or his home, etc.? Have I ever cheated another? Have I, when stealing anything, sought to return it? Have I considered that God does not forgive the sin of stealing unless the stolen goods are returned? Have I injured the good name of another? Have I gossiped about, or calumniated another? Have I caused any injury to another?
AGAINST THE 8th COMMANDMENT:
Have I always spoken as I think? Have I ever lied? Have I injured another by telling lies? Is it my habit to tell lies? Have I pretended before others to be better than I am, or have I spoken with pleasure anything evil about another? Have I sworn falsely against another? Have I condemned others?
AGAINST the FIVE COMMANDMENTS OF THE CHURCH:
Have I come joyously to Church on Sundays and Holydays? Have I observed the fast-days? Have I complained about the fast-days? Have I always endeavored to come to Holy Confession well prepared? Have I come more than once a year? Have I received Holy Communion with a warm faith and fear of God? During the forbidden times, have I taken part in any unlawful entertainment and games?
AS to the SEVEN CAPITAL SINS:
Have I despised others? Have I prided myself over others because I am wealthier, or have better clothes? Have I carried myself as being the best, the most beautiful, the wisest, than others? Have I derided others? Have I prayed or done something only to be praised? Have I cheated? Have I willingly give alms to a pauper? Have I envied others? Have I rejoiced when misfortune befell others, or, have I grieved when others enjoyed a better lot in life? Have I been too selective at meals? Have I been intoxicated with liquor? Have I caused another to be drunk? Have I squandered my money? Have I been angry? Have I retained animosity with another for long? Did I ever in anger strike another? Have I gone to Church?
AS to the SIX SINS AGAINST THE HOLY SPIRIT:
Have I purposely sinned, presuming that the merciful God, even so will forgive me? Have I always relied upon God? Have I always believed what God revealed and what the Holy Church teaches? Have I ever read books opposing the Holy Faith? Have I been envious of the grace of God in others? When being reminded unto good, have I obeyed with a willing heart? Having sinned, did I strive to cleanse my soul in Holy Confession?
AS to the NINE SINE by PARTICIPATION:
Have I enticed others into sin? In order to steal have I counseled another unto the act? Did I ever lead another to the place where he sinned? Have I ordered or forced another to sin? Did I strive to withhold one from sinning? Have I encouraged others to sin? Have I rejoiced when others have sinned , or have I praised others when they committed sin? Have I informed the authorities when their subjects committed vice? Have I concealed the sin of another? Have I shown filthy pictures to others, or have I give evil books to be read?
AS to the FOUR SINS WHICH CLAMOUR UNTO HEAVEN:
Have I desired to take my life, commit suicide? Have I committed filthy things with animals? Have I oppressed the orphans, widows or the poor? Have I withheld the just wages from the laborer, or the servant?