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#1 of 81 Old 04-13-2007, 09:09 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My DH is Catholic and went to Catholic school from K-12 but he doesn't know much about his religion - which confuses me a lot!

Anyhoo... I was wondering how often a Catholic person is supossed to go to confession... for some reason, I was under the assumption that you needed to confess before taking communion so once a week was the preferred timeframe.

My DH thinks the answer is "I dunno, whenever needed?"

Any input
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#2 of 81 Old 04-13-2007, 09:20 PM
 
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I believe it's a personal decision. I don't agree w/the ideal of sitting in a cubicle confessing my sins and receiving penance. I haven't gone since hs (Catholic K-12) and am not troubled at all by guilt.
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#3 of 81 Old 04-13-2007, 09:30 PM
 
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The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

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#4 of 81 Old 04-13-2007, 09:31 PM
 
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The rules used to state once a week confession before taking communion- now it's once a year or if there is a 'biggie' to confess.

Michelle -mom to Katlyn 4/00 , Jake 3/02, and Seth 5/04
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#5 of 81 Old 04-13-2007, 10:16 PM
 
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At least once a year, usually during Lent so you can receive communion during the Easter season. Between times as needed to tidy up mortal sins.

It's also called the Sacrament of Reconciliation now, not confession.

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#6 of 81 Old 04-13-2007, 10:37 PM
 
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semantics

Yep, that's the rule of thumb at our church: before Easter
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#7 of 81 Old 04-13-2007, 10:49 PM
 
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You're still supposed to go to confession before communion if you've committed a mortal (serious) sin.

You're required to go at least once a year.
http://www.livingcatholicism.com/arc...ten_shoul.html

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#8 of 81 Old 04-14-2007, 12:06 PM
 
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We go at least twice a year. Like Led said, once a year is minimum.

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#9 of 81 Old 04-14-2007, 12:21 PM
 
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You must go before receiving Communion if you are in the state of mortal sin. Or, once a year during Lent if not in mortal sin.
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#10 of 81 Old 04-14-2007, 08:41 PM
 
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You must go before receiving Communion if you are in the state of mortal sin. Or, once a year during Lent if not in mortal sin.
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#11 of 81 Old 04-14-2007, 10:07 PM
 
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http://www.catholic.org/frz/examen/examen_mortal.htm

here is al ist of mortal sins in case any one was wondering. i would say once a year is stretching it a bit unles youonly plan on recieving the Eucharist once a year.

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

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#12 of 81 Old 04-14-2007, 10:47 PM
 
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Ok- I read through that list and the interpretations of some of the commandments is a bit off, IMO. It has excessive body piercings and tattoos in 'you shall not kill' and serious cruelty to animals under 'you shall not steal'.

I'll go with what our family friend/priest told us and that's unless you have a 'biggie' it's once a year.

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#13 of 81 Old 04-14-2007, 11:20 PM
 
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I liked that "telling bad jokes about the Church" is a venial sin. You know the Catholic Church likes a good joke as much as the next guy, but they're pretty harsh on the bad ones.
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#14 of 81 Old 04-15-2007, 06:03 PM
 
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I liked that "telling bad jokes about the Church" is a venial sin. You know the Catholic Church likes a good joke as much as the next guy, but they're pretty harsh on the bad ones.
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#15 of 81 Old 04-15-2007, 06:06 PM
 
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Oh, and although you're encouraged to confess venial sins, you're not required to, unless you haven't comitted any mortal sins and that's all you have to confess in your obligatory yearly confession!
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#16 of 81 Old 04-15-2007, 11:00 PM
 
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Ok- I read through that list and the interpretations of some of the commandments is a bit off, IMO. It has excessive body piercings and tattoos in 'you shall not kill' and serious cruelty to animals under 'you shall not steal'.
I will agree with that. but I am still not sure what the difference is between a mortal sin and a venial sin. How big is a biggie and who gets to decide if something is big or not?

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

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#17 of 81 Old 04-15-2007, 11:10 PM
 
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I will agree with that. but I am still not sure what the difference is between a mortal sin and a venial sin. How big is a biggie and who gets to decide if something is big or not?
The way it was explained to me (by our family friend who is a priest and during our precana counseling) is it's a big thing if it's obvious- like 'thou shall not kill' or if it's something that weighs heavy on your heart. Birth control pills is something I'll use as an example- they prevent pregnancy, but if I'm on them for a medical reason or I've prayed on it and have come to terms with using them, it's not something I'm going to confess, even though it could be considered a 'big' thing. If I used BCP and as a result felt incredibly guilty b/c of it, I would confess. It's mostly a personal thing about what is big or not- again, from a pretty reliable source, IMO. I'm comfortable with using it as a guide.

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#18 of 81 Old 04-16-2007, 01:31 PM
 
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so if you don't feel guilty about your sin or if you are ok with it you don't have to confess it? that doesn't seem right. That would make everything relative wouldn't it?


(I swear I am not being snarky here. would this be better in a new thread or does it relate here?)

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

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#19 of 81 Old 04-16-2007, 05:10 PM
 
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There are 3 conditions that must be met for a sin to be mortal. I don't quite remember all three but it's something like this: 1. It has to be grave (runs the gamut from lying to missing mass to murder) 2. We have to *know* it is grave. 3. With full knowledge of the gravity, we still willfully do it anyway. Unless all three conditions are met, the action is not a mortal sin.

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#20 of 81 Old 04-16-2007, 06:27 PM
 
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The way it was explained to me (by our family friend who is a priest and during our precana counseling) is it's a big thing if it's obvious- like 'thou shall not kill' or if it's something that weighs heavy on your heart. Birth control pills is something I'll use as an example- they prevent pregnancy, but if I'm on them for a medical reason or I've prayed on it and have come to terms with using them, it's not something I'm going to confess, even though it could be considered a 'big' thing. If I used BCP and as a result felt incredibly guilty b/c of it, I would confess. It's mostly a personal thing about what is big or not- again, from a pretty reliable source, IMO. I'm comfortable with using it as a guide.
Well, I'm not meaning to tell you what to do, you can confess whatever you want and it's between you and God, but just so you know, technically, it really doesn't make a difference how you feel about it or how it weighs on your heart - if you're trying to practice your faith fully (i.e. live according to the teachings of the Church), then if it's a sin, it's a sin, and you're supposed to confess it (and resolve to try as hard as you can not to do it anymore). As long as, as a PP said, the knowledge was there, for example, if you honestly didn't know that birth control pills are considered morally wrong according to our faith, then you wouldn't have sinned. But if you knew that, if you didn't understand the teaching or agree with it or it didn't really bother you, it is still a sin. The only way you could completely trust your own judgment/feeling on these issues is if you had a 100% perfectly-formed conscience, and none of us does, which is why we need Scripture and 2,000 years of Tradition and clergy who speak through the power of the Holy Spirit, to guide us!

I think the really important point that a lot of (most?) Catholics miss is that confession is not supposed to be this horrible, awful thing that we dread doing and do just the bare minimum (which, as someone mentioned before, is at least once a year during Lent). For believers, it is a beautiful gift from God! A chance to be cleansed and have all our sins forgiven and start over! It is so awesome, you actually feel lighter when you leave - I usually get chills at the absolution! The usual recommendation is to go to Confession monthly. Even if you haven't committed a serious sin that would prevent you from receiving Communion if you haven't confessed, the grace of Communion is more efficacious on a soul that is as free as possible from sin. Getting in the habit of frequent confession (weekly, monthly, whatever) can do *wonders* for your spiritual life - it really focuses you and makes you think as you go through your days. Ideally it would be accompanied by some spiritual direction from a good Confessor and give you some specific areas of your life that need work to focus on.

HTH!!

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#21 of 81 Old 04-16-2007, 10:09 PM
 
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The post from suzywan was what i was trying to say- but said much better.

Yes, a sin is a sin, but there are variables. Birth control pills are only a sin if used specifically for preventing pregnancy. IF they are used for another medical reason (endometrious, regulate period, etc.) and the byproduct is preventing pregnancy, it's not a sin. Same action, same outcome, different intent. If I have my tubes tied specifically to prevent a pregnancy just b/c I don't want more kids, that is a sin. If my doctor tells me getting pregnant will be a major detriment to me, and I get my tubes tied to protect my health, that isn't a sin. Again, same action, same outcome, different intent.

I know most of the rules. If I don't know something, I can always ask my mom. She's VERY involved in the church, she teaches religion at a Catholic high school, she's working on her masters in theological studies.

So, if you don't know it's a sin, no, you don't need to confess. Ideally, once you find out you've committed a mortal sin, using the 3 'rules', that's when you'd confess.

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#22 of 81 Old 04-17-2007, 09:29 AM
 
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Yes, a sin is a sin, but there are variables. Birth control pills are only a sin if used specifically for preventing pregnancy. IF they are used for another medical reason (endometrious, regulate period, etc.) and the byproduct is preventing pregnancy, it's not a sin. Same action, same outcome, different intent. If I have my tubes tied specifically to prevent a pregnancy just b/c I don't want more kids, that is a sin. If my doctor tells me getting pregnant will be a major detriment to me, and I get my tubes tied to protect my health, that isn't a sin. Again, same action, same outcome, different intent.
Sorry, but that is simply not true. Again, people do whatever they want and there are dissenting clergy and theologians who will tell them it's OK, and that's between them and God, I am not trying to judge here - but if the OP is asking about the actual teachings of the Catholic Church, then what you said is incorrect. According to the Catechism (which is the authoritative teaching document of the Church) there is *never* a situation in which using BCPs or having tubes tied is morally licit. Never. Not even in the case of health/protecting the life of the mother. Same with abortion, etc. If you need the exact Catechism reference, I could look it up.

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#23 of 81 Old 04-17-2007, 10:02 AM
 
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According to the Catechism (which is the authoritative teaching document of the Church) there is *never* a situation in which using BCPs or having tubes tied is morally licit. Never. Not even in the case of health/protecting the life of the mother. Same with abortion, etc.
Of course, this is why the Church is hemorrhaging members. As far as I'm concerned the faithful are not *required* to be martyrs to enter the kingdom of God.

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#24 of 81 Old 04-17-2007, 12:07 PM
 
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Of course, this is why the Church is hemorrhaging members. As far as I'm concerned the faithful are not *required* to be martyrs to enter the kingdom of God.
I'm sorry you feel that way.

But actually the Church is not "hemorrhaging members" - record numbers of people, last I saw statistics on it, are joining RCIA programs, coming back to the faith after having left, inquiring and learning more about their faith, etc. (and particularly younger people, 30 and under).

I am so sad about people who DO choose to leave the Church, but the solution is to teach them more - not to water down the Truth. So many people think it's all about some sort of arbitrary "rules" and they have no clue about the beautiful and profound theological system behind the doctrine. If anyone came to me and asked why Catholics are told to do or not to do something, I would be more than happy to explain to them the beauty and joy of our faith, and the reasons behind our teachings. It's not at all about "being a martyr" - it's about living a life of joy and faith.

Since I decided (a number of years ago) to try my hardest to live my life in accordance with the faith I was professing to believe in, I have been SO.MUCH.HAPPIER than I ever could have imagined!! Sure, like everyone else I have a hard time with certain things, but I have so much joy in my life as a result, I cannot even describe it. Hey, if this is martyrdom, I'll take it!

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#25 of 81 Old 04-17-2007, 12:33 PM
 
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I was being quite literal with the term martyr - to die for one's faith - wrt no BC or abortion even when your life is in peril. While martyrdom is sanctified to an extent, it is not required. I am called to lay down my life for "others", but the Church cannot demand it. Not as long as the Church has justifiable homocide/war, anyway.

And frankly, oftentimes people are happier when they no longer have to make the tough decisions on their own. But remember, come judgement day, we stand alone before God. The Church will not take responsibility for our individual actions or inactions - those are ours to own. For me, I take the lesser of 2 sins when I use BC. It is far worse to be an awful parent than to prevent it.

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#26 of 81 Old 04-17-2007, 01:06 PM
 
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And frankly, oftentimes people are happier when they no longer have to make the tough decisions on their own. But remember, come judgement day, we stand alone before God. The Church will not take responsibility for our individual actions or inactions - those are ours to own. For me, I take the lesser of 2 sins when I use BC. It is far worse to be an awful parent than to prevent it.
Well, sometimes it doesn't make the decisions any easier, but at least if you make the tough choices with the conviction that you're doing the right thing, you can have some confidence and happiness from that, too.

I don't understand what you mean by "the Church will not take responsibility for our individual actions...." If one is living her life according to the teachings of the Church, then she doesn't have anything to worry about anyway in standing before God on judgment day - God gave us the Scriptures and Christ Himself left us the Church under Peter.

And certainly, I think we all know that being a lousy parent is not a good thing, but it's not (normally, unless you're talking about extemes like abuse or something) a mortal sin, but rather a personal shortcoming that needs to be worked on. And BTW there is a morally licit way to prevent a pregnancy if one has severe grounds to do so (such as physical or psychological trauma that might come as a result of it). It's called NFP, it's NOT the same thing as the old "rhythm method," and it's 99% (same as the pill) effective when learned and practiced correctly.

Look, I'm not meaning to get into a personal debate about one's religious choices, but it's a major thing for me when someone misstates the truths of my faith. There's enough confusion out there already about what and why the Church teaches. If a person is going to choose not to follow the Church's teachings, that's fine, that's her business. But when a person is telling others something that is not accurate and potentially leading them to commit sins unknowingly (yes, we already established that they're not fully responsible for those sins if they really didn't know, but still) that is a big problem for me. People can do whatever they choose, but I feel they should be honest about what they are choosing and not lead others astray.

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#27 of 81 Old 04-17-2007, 01:33 PM
 
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The Church is comprised of humans - humans are fallable - ergo.....

I have misstated nothing - it's my faith too, by the way.

Do not lead people to believe that they can ever know the will of God - it is a complete mystery. The Church is not proof and cannot provide proof. All is faith. And just so we're clear when I refer the the Church I'm talking solely of the human designed hierarchy, *not* the God designed living and breathing body of the faithful. Technically, every Catholic is a special part of the whole. And the Pope is the bishop of Rome.

Being a lousy parent visists the sins of the "father" on the children - effects can last generations - this is far from a personal failing.

Back on topic - confession is required once a year, but one should go whenever they feel disconnected from the grace of God. Personal opinion here: if you feel this way more than once every few weeks, steps stronger than confession should be undertaken.

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#28 of 81 Old 04-17-2007, 03:54 PM
 
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I'm sorry you feel that way.

But actually the Church is not "hemorrhaging members" - record numbers of people, last I saw statistics on it, are joining RCIA programs, coming back to the faith after having left, inquiring and learning more about their faith, etc. (and particularly younger people, 30 and under).

I am so sad about people who DO choose to leave the Church, but the solution is to teach them more - not to water down the Truth. So many people think it's all about some sort of arbitrary "rules" and they have no clue about the beautiful and profound theological system behind the doctrine. If anyone came to me and asked why Catholics are told to do or not to do something, I would be more than happy to explain to them the beauty and joy of our faith, and the reasons behind our teachings. It's not at all about "being a martyr" - it's about living a life of joy and faith.

Since I decided (a number of years ago) to try my hardest to live my life in accordance with the faith I was professing to believe in, I have been SO.MUCH.HAPPIER than I ever could have imagined!! Sure, like everyone else I have a hard time with certain things, but I have so much joy in my life as a result, I cannot even describe it. Hey, if this is martyrdom, I'll take it!
DITTO!

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#29 of 81 Old 04-17-2007, 06:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks for ALL your replies... and I'm always pleased when folks freely bring up the joy that their religion brings them, IMO, if it ain't bringing you more joy than trouble, we have problem no matter what the religion...

. And when others respectfully question the same religion- I learn that way as well.
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#30 of 81 Old 04-17-2007, 06:59 PM
 
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It is too bad that the list a link was provided to wasn't more clear. Listing incest as a sin, but not clearly stating whose sin it is is a mistake. Many victims/survivors of incest already feel that the incest was their fault and that they have done something wrong by being involved in incest - it may be a no-brainer to people who are not incest victims that the perpetrator, not the victim, is the one who has sinned - but sadly, that is one of the terrible things incest does to a victim. And many of the ways victims deal with that pain - such as self-mutilation and suicide - are also listed as sins.

Jesus' first commandment was for us to love one another. Compassion must always precede judgement. I have known incredibly wise and compassionate priests, and I have known some who would have scolded Jesus' response to the woman caught in adultery for being such a soft-minded liberal.
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