Lord have mercy. I confess. Origins of this prayer. A general confession of sin Preparatory prayer used by the priest just before Mass 12 th Century – used by everyone at the beginning of Mass. Preparing ourselves to celebrate the sacred mysteries.
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This is a ritualised poetic way to emphasise our awareness of sinfulness
It expresses the sincerity of our contrition
To pray for us to the Lord our God
Our sin affects everybody