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  #1  
Old Jun 28, '09, 6:11 pm
aball1035 aball1035 is offline
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Default What constitutes mortal sin?

In other words, who declares and how what sins are mortal or venial?
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  #2  
Old Jun 28, '09, 8:34 pm
Texas Roofer Texas Roofer is offline
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Default Re: What constitutes mortal sin?

Quote:
Originally Posted by aball1035 View Post
In other words, who declares and how what sins are mortal or venial?
Moral sins are sin of substance (intent, knowledge and commitment)
Venial sins are sin of light or minor substance (intent, knowledge and commitment)
As sin is on a continuum no one knows when you cross from mortal from venial. The church deals with this through teach to repent all sins.

Mortal sins examples are direct violations of the 10 commandments plus sins of both similar magnitude or indirect means to achieve these same sins.

Venial sins examples are minor lies, enjoying anotherís minor misfortune, petty hate, gossip, etc.

Hope that helps
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  #3  
Old Jun 28, '09, 9:02 pm
Abigail Abigail is offline
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Default Re: What constitutes mortal sin?

Dear Texas Roofer:

Unfortunately, your post does not help.

I am struggling with the same question, and have posted in the Moral Theology Forum under the title "Missing Mass - Mortal sin, venial sin, or no sin at all."

You state "As sin is on a continuum no one knows when you cross from mortal from venial."

As I understand it, we are only required to confess mortal sins. If no one knows whether a sin is mortal or venial, how do we know which sins we are obliged to confess? If, during confession, the priest tells us to confess only our mortal sins, how do we obey? What if we make a mistake - is that mistake mortal, or venial, or no sin at all?

One of the ten commandments states we shall not bear false witness. How do we know if our lie is "minor?" We are commanded to love our neighbor as ourselves. How do we know whether our gossip is "petty." Why would enjoying a neighbor's misfortune be venial?

How do we balance the Church's command to attend Mass every Sunday against Christ's statement that "the sabbath is made for man, man is not made for the sabbath." Why would Christ die to give us his Body and Blood, and then condemn us to Hell for giving in to human weakness and sleeping in on Sunday once a year? Where is the balance between an unhealthy obsession with following the rules, and an equally unhealthy abdication of our responsibility to lead a Christian life?

I think this is an important question, but so far my other post hasn't gotten many responses.
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  #4  
Old Jun 28, '09, 9:26 pm
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DorianGregorian DorianGregorian is offline
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Default Re: What constitutes mortal sin?

For a sin to be mortal, there must be three conditions.

1) Grave Matter - The sin in question must be severe.
2) Full Knowledge - The person must know it is a mortal sin.
3) Full Consent - The person must completely consent to the act with their full will.


If one of these three conditions are absent, the sin is not mortal.

For example if you get into a mild argument with someone, conditions 2 & 3 are met, but mild disagreement and debate is not a grave matter.

If somebody takes the Eucharist in a state of mortal sin, but completely unaware that they are in that state, it is not a mortal sin because they do not know they committed mortal sin.

A child under the age of reason cannot commit mortal sin because they do not have the ability to freely consent to an action.

Read more in the Catechism, I'm sure it will provide a better explanation.

Laus Deo
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  #5  
Old Jun 28, '09, 9:54 pm
Abigail Abigail is offline
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Default Re: What constitutes mortal sin?

Thanks, DorianGregorian!

Why would a mild argument or debate meet any of the qualifications for mortal sin? By mild argument, I am assuming simply a difference of opinion, to which we are all entitled.

Of course, if that degenerates into name-calling or anger or a desire for revenge or a physical altercation, it becomes a sin against charity. The argument itself may not be grave matter (it may be about whether your cat is cute), but the response could very well be. So I'm kinda unclear on your example.
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  #6  
Old Jun 28, '09, 10:02 pm
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DorianGregorian DorianGregorian is offline
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Default Re: What constitutes mortal sin?

Your welcome, I apologize that that answer was unclear. First I should mention that those examples were merely an opinion, and second I had in might a mild difference of opinion or maybe if somebody walked away angry or whatever. I think (again my opinion) that an argument only becomes a mortal sin when you start getting violent. Day-to-day arguments at the workplace for example would not be a mortal sin, unless you throw the stapler at somebody;s head and flip them off, something of that magnitude. (though I would like to think it's an educated opinion, as I read a lot of Theology and Scripture and could possibly see myself, one day, if it is God's will and if I have to courage to answer, being one of his Priests or Deacons).

Remember Mortal Sin is a serious matter,it breaks our relationship with God, it's not something that happens lightly, you really have to want to do it to make it a Mortal Sin. Don't get too stressed out about it , you pretty much have to want to commit a Mortal Sin in order to commit it.

Laus Deo
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  #7  
Old Jun 28, '09, 10:42 pm
Abigail Abigail is offline
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Default Re: What constitutes mortal sin?

Thanks for the clarification, DorianGregorian! I hope if you become a priest or deacon that you don't throw staplers at anyones head!

I agree that mortal sin is a serious matter, and breaks our relationship with God. But, as they say, the devil is in the details. Is it enough that we intend to do the thing that is considered sinful, or do we have to also intend that it break our relationship with God?

Here's an example. The rule is that no one is supposed to slam the back door. Child one slams the back door accidentally, and says "oops, sorry." Child two slams the door intentionally, but says "oops, sorry" (and means it when he says it). Child three slams the door and says "I hate you all, and I'll slam the d**n door when I please." All three children broke the rule. Is that enough for them to be cut off from the family (mortal sin)? I would argue that child one didn't sin at all, child two sinned venially, and only child three sinned mortally, because he WANTED to be sent away.

I don't believe God practices "gotcha" theology. "Now, Mary, I know you love me and all, but there was that one time you didn't get out of bed for Mass and, well, you know, that was a mortal sin because you knew you were supposed to do it, so, well, Mary, it's off to an eternity of torment for you........"
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