St John of Kronstadt – A Preparation for Confession

St John of Kronstadt was a married Russian Orthodox Christian priest living in the 19th century. Below are some excerpts from a prayer he wrote titled ‘A Preparation for Confession’. The complete prayer may be found at

“I, a sinful soul, confess to our Lord God and Savour Jesus Christ, all of my evil acts which I have done, said or thought from baptism even unto this present day. I have sinned before the Lord by ungratefulness for all of God’s great and unceasing gifts; His long-suffering and His providence for me, a sinner. I have sinned: by not praying in the morning and in the evening and in the course of the day; by not attending the services or by coming to Church only halfheartedly, lazily and carelessly; by conversing during the services, by not paying attention, letting my mind wander and by departure from the Church before the dismissal and blessing. I have sinned by judging members of the clergy.

“I have sinned by not respecting the Feasts, breaking the Fasts, and by immoderation in food and drink. I have sinned by self-importance, disobedience, wilfulness, self-righteousness, and the seeking of approval and praise. I have sinned by unbelief, lack of faith, doubts, despair, despondency, abusive thoughts, blasphemy and swearing. I have sinned by pride, a high opinion of myself, narcissism, vanity, conceit, envy, love of praise, love of honours, and by putting on airs. I have sinned many times by my Confession: belittling, justifying and keeping silent about sins. I have sinned against the Most-holy and Lifecreating Mysteries of the Body and Blood of our Lord by coming to Holy Communion without humility or the fear of God. 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.”


Source: Lychnos August / September 2016