Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

A French Reformed Prayer of Confession from 1555

Eric Parker recently drew my attention to a liturgical book of the exiled French Reformed community in Frankfurt am Main from 1555. In this post, the first of possibly a couple on the prayers in the Lord’s Day liturgy, I give a translation of the Latin text of the prayer of confession that comes toward the beginning of that service.


Lord God, eternal and almighty Father, we acknowledge and confess frankly that in the presence of your most holy Majesty we are wretched sinners, and that we, even from the first beginning by which we were conceived and born, are prone toward every evil and strangers from every good: because of this vice we continually transgress your most holy laws, and for that reason procure destruction for ourselves by your most just judgment.

But nevertheless, Lord God, we do repent so to have offended your goodness, and therefore we condemn ourselves all our excessively wicked deeds, praying that you would hasten to the aid of this our calamity in keeping with your mercy. Pity all of us, therefore, O most merciful and piteous God and Father, we implore you by the name of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord; and forgive our vices that have been wiped away and all our filth that has been washed away, and increase day by day the power and gifts of your Holy Spirit in us, because of whom we, truly and earnestly understanding our misery and acknowledging our unrighteousness, may truly repent [veram poenitentiam agamus], in order that we, having died to sin by this repentance, may hereafter abound in the fruits of righteousness and innocence, by which we may please you through Jesus Christ your Son, our only Redeemer and Mediator, Amen.

By E.J. Hutchinson

E.J. Hutchinson is Assistant Professor of Classics at Hillsdale College.

5 replies on “A French Reformed Prayer of Confession from 1555”

Comments are closed.