For spurning love, joy, peace, patience and kindness (Gal 5:20) and choosing personal and institutional violence, we repent, O Lord.
For ignoring the Word of God, living and effective (Heb 4:12), and hiding behind policies and procedures.
For cowardice in confronting the culture of death, for turning a deaf ear to the call to be prophets of the Gospel of Life.
For turning a blind eye to crime and corruption, for allowing our prisons and jails to become schools of crime and inhuman cruelty, and for silence regarding human trafficking, the ravages of pornography, and many other evils.
For the times we have not conducted our affairs with justice (Psalm 112:5), and have misused Church funds for private gain.
For giving the Lord the offering of Cain, for sloppy work, ill prepared homilies, spare-changing the Lord instead of tithing, for not giving God what is our best.
For our failures to take to heart the Lord's condemnation of those who scandalize "the little ones" (Mt 18: 6), and for failing to protect children from sexual abuse.
For making idols of pleasure and comfort, which has led to many evils including appalling instances of sexual abuse of children.
For embracing immorality, impurity, evil desires and greed (Col 3:5) and betraying our covenant - commitments to the One Church of Christ, to our families, and to the poor.
For not picking up our crosses and following Jesus, for avoiding the purifying pains that come with a life of faith, hope and love.
For refusing to worship God in spirit and in truth at the Holy Eucharist, for not keeping the Lord's Day holy.
For making our Father's house a den of thieves (Jer. 7:11) by leaving the celebration of the Eucharist unconverted, and by failing to announce the Gospel of the Lord.
For refusing to raise up our children in Godly ways by neglecting their religious formation.
For our hearts of stone, for not being made ill by the collapse of Joseph (Amos 6:6), while we have pursued opulence, extravagance and luxury.
For turning a deaf ear to the cries of the poor by not responding with compassion and competence to those most in need.
For abandoning the widow and the orphan in dangerous neighborhoods, for refusing to share resources with those most in need, for creating zip codes where poor children have little access to quality education.
For averting our eyes from the one who begs and looking only for our own good.
For turning away from the widow and the orphan and choosing the sleek and the rich, we repent, O Lord.
The Acts of the Apostles 15:4 tell us that visitors to Jerusalem were welcomed by the church and the apostles and the presbyters, for all of the times we have not welcomed others to our parishes, especially for the times we have refused to allow African American Catholics into our parish communities.
In Christ there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female (Gal 3:28); for institutionalized racism reflected by generations of neglect toward a people most victimized by violent crimes, infiltration of drugs in communities, redlining, and failed school systems.
For tearing each other to pieces by our choosing bitterness, vanity, self-glory and worldly ways.
Lord, have mercy.