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Historical Context

These are pages from Treasure Chest of Fun and Fact, which was a bi-monthly, school-year magazine by the Catechetical Guild Educational Society that ran from 1946 to 1972. Treasure Chest featured stories for Catholics that included religious subjects, American history, Crossword Puzzles, funny comics, and original fictions stories (including their longest running series, Chuck White). The magazine was only sold on a subscription basis to Catholic schools and was not featured on newsstands, which was the common way to sell comic magazines at the time.

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“You must not pray at Mass, you must say Mass.” - Pope Pius X
In ancient times Jewish priests confessed their sins before offering sacrifices. 
In the eighth century, Egbert of York, when instructing penitents, used one of the first forms of the confíteor.
Until the 11th century the confíteor was a private prayer said before mass until the sixth Roman Ordo declared the confíteor as a prayer priests must say from the altar. 
Various wordings were used until the 16th century when Pope Pius V gave it its present form. He made an exception for certain religious orders to keep their previous forms.
In the confíteor we humbly confess our sins before all heaven and earth. We confess that we are sinners in the eyes of God and His saints, bowed under the weight of sin. 
We can do nothing but ask Our Lady and the saints to intercede for us and ask pardon for us. 
With their intercession and God’s forgiveness, we can enter with a sinless soul into the joy of the Holy Sacrifice.
In the double form of the confíteor said at mass the church emphasizes the community, or group, form of praying. The priest’s confession includes “you, brethren,” or the lay people, and the lay people’s confession includes “you, father.” None of us is alone. We are all one in Christ.

The Confíteor


S. I confess to almighty God, to the blessed Mary ever Virgin, blessed Michael the Archangel, blessed John the Baptist, the holy Apostles Peter and Paul, to all the Saints, and to you, Father, that I have sinned exceedingly in thought, word, and deed, through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault. Therefore I beseech the blessed Mary, ever Virgin, blessed Michael the Archangel, blessed John the Baptist, the holy Apostles Peter and Paul, all the Saints, and you, Father, to pray to the Lord our God for me.
P. May almighty God be merciful to thee, and forgiving thy sins, bring thee to everlasting life.
S. Amen.


Confíteor Deo omnipoténti, beátæ Maríæ semper Vírgini, beáto Michaéli Archángelo, beáto Ioánni Baptístæ, sanctis Apóstolis Petro et Paulo, ómnibus Sanctis, et vobis, fratres: quia peccávi nimis cogitatióne, verbo et ópere: mea culpa, mea culpa, mea máxima culpa. Ideo precor beátam Maríam semper Vírginem, beátum Michaélem Archángelum, beátum Ioánnem Baptístam, sanctos Apóstolos Petrum et Paulum, omnes Sanctos, et vos, fratres, oráre pro me ad Dóminum, Deum nostrum.
M. Misereátur tui omnípotens Deus, et, dimíssis peccátis tuis, perdúcat te ad vitam ætérnam.
S. Amen.

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