An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

Remission of Sins

To remit is to refrain from enforcing a punishment. Remission of sins generally means forgiveness and absolution of sins. However, the suggestion of remitted punishment recalls a juridical understanding of sin and forgiveness that is no longer emphasized in the Episcopal Church. The “absolution and remission” of sins is pronounced after the general confession of the congregation in the Penitential Order of Rite 1 and after the confession of sin in the Rite 1 versions of Morning and Evening Prayer (BCP, pp. 321, 42, 63). One version of the Nicene Creed in Rite 1 mentions belief in baptism for the remission of sins. But the more contemporary Rite 1 version and the Rite 2 version of the Nicene Creed substitute “forgiveness” for “remission,” and make no mention of the remission of sins (BCP, pp. 327-328, 359).

Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from “An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians,” Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.