A Prayer for Forgiveness

O glorious Jesu, O meekest Jesu, O most sweetest Jesu, I pray that I may have true confession, contrition and satisfaction or I die. And that I may see and receive thy holy body, God and Man, Saviour of all mankind, Christ Jesu without sin; and that thou wilt, my Lord God, forgive me all my sins for thy glorious wounds and passion; and that I may end my life in the true faith of all-Holy Church; and in perfect love and charity with my even Christian [sic] as thy creature. And I commend my soul into thy holy hands through the glorious help of thy blessed mother of mercy, Our Lady Saint Mary, and all the holy company of Heaven. Amen. — by anonymous, printed in 1484 by William Caxton

William Caxton (c. 1420–1492), an English merchant, was the first person to bring the printing press to England and was the first book-seller in England. A cloth trader, Caxton was drawn to the manufacturing and selling of a different sort of “texture” when he heard about the printing press. In 1475, he brought the device to England and would produce about 100 books and other publications. The above prayer is the first work of Catholic spirituality printed in the English language.

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