Does my Dream Career Violate My Catholic Faith?


Hey all-

So I have quite a terrible conundrum on my hands. I won’t go into specifics unless you need them, but over the weekend, I learned of a path that would get me into my dream career. And when I say “dream career,” I mean it. It’s a specialized sector of the hospitality industry that I have been obsessed with since being a toddler. In work now (I’m in insurance) I feel close to no purpose in what I do, and this career would overbearingly fill that need. And I firmly believe it is a noble profession; I feel as though I can seriously help others and make people happy.

But there’s a problem.

As with anything in hospitality, there’s the inevitable truth that working on Sundays simply has to happen. Now, let me be absolutely clear. I have no intention on working Sundays. I’d much rather work a six day work week than have to violate honoring the Sabbath. Yet, I am intensely conflicted. Here’s a list of my positives and negatives

-doing a quite literal dream job
-making others happier
-making myself happier
-fulfilling a purpose/pleasing my inner child
-a job that I yearn to get out of bed and do
-a job that I’d love

So here’s where it gets tricky. I have three obejections, and I also suffer from scruples, so I have to tread carefully when making decisions. Firstly, even if I don’t work myself in Sunday’s, aren’t I promoting an industry that does? All my co workers, those who we’re attending to, and everyone in between would indeed be working/doing things on Sundays (note this is in the leisure field, so I don’t know that guests would be violating anything.) Secondly, if I were to enter the managerial side of things, there’s an unfortunate truth that I may have to schedule people on Sundays, which again, I have absolutely no desire to do! If I were in charge, we wouldn’t open on Sundays! Finally, I have a particular fear of the sin of scandal, and I fear that my involvement in such an industry could lead others to undermine the Sabbath.

I’m just incredibly conflicted, and confused. I feel like this is the path God is calling me to, He has, for the entirely of my life, allowed me to be so in love with this industry, and carry such an excitement for it, and I can’t see Him not wanting me to experience it. On the other side, I have this ugly, gut feeling that this would be an idol, and that I would be choosing it over God, which I have no desire to do. I fear that the feeling could be the voice of God, but I don’t know that for sure. It’s not as though I prefer money, so I pick up a shift on Sunday. No, I truly hate that unfortunate fact, but there’s no way to get around it!

On a final note, I do feel that this is just one negative among many positives. I think of the vast majority of careers, and how this one, in comparison, does so much good for so many people, and makes them happy.

Please advise. I will contact a priest to have a discussion, but I’d love to hear your thoughts. Please do pray to the Spirit, ask Him for wisdom, because I could use a whole lot of that right about now.

Saint Augustine, Pray for Us!


You need to be under the care of a therapist and your pastor. Scruples are not rational.


You are not required to refuse to work on Sundays. If this is your dream job, that should not stop you from accepting it.


At this point, I will say to talk with your therapist and or priest. Any comments here will most likely be of no real benefit to you and can feed your scrupulosity.


I agree with others who are telling your to get help from both the priests and the medical profession for your scruples.

I’ve worked in a patient-care hospital profession since 1980.

Here’s the deal, sir–people don’t just get sick or hurt Monday through Saturday. They are sick or hurt on Sundays, too.

Someone has to help them. Don’t you remember that the Lord Jesus healed people on the Sabbath, and condemned the people who criticized Him?

And there are plenty of people who work in health care (hospitals, etc.) on Sundays who are not directly involved with healing the patients, but their work is still vital to the rest of us who ARE healing patients. One example that comes to mind is computer help desk and other information technology professionals–we who work with patient health care would not be able to do our work without the help of IT people, especially on Sundays! (That’s when computers often choose to go down, and also on holidays like Christmas! Thank goodness for the computer help desk people!)

In most towns and cities, there are plenty of Mass options for those of us who work on Sundays. If there are no Masses, I know that bishops are happy to give dispensations to health care workers who must work during Sunday Mass.

From what I have read about scruples, you will have a hard time accepting what I say, so again, please go get your scruples healed!


I got the impression the OP was talking about some non-medical hospitality industry.


Working in a hotel/motel/restaurant on Sunday is not immoral. I don’t know where you would get such an idea. Hotels have to be open on Sunday.

Just make every effort to attend Mass.


I appreciate everyone who has replied here, and I do welcome the friendly reminders to speak with my priest about the subject. I know, I know, this is very emotionally charged post, but going through this decision has simply been maddening for me.

As someone up there guessed, is indeed in a non-medical field. Again, specifics don’t matter, but for our purposes we can liken it to going into a managerial position in something like a zoo. The zoo will be open seven days a week, and being a manager, there is that plain fact that somehow or another, I would be influencing others to work on Sundays. But again, this is something that I wish to do not for poor motives, not money, not power in a company, not even necessarily to serve myself (although that’s a good byproduct.) It’s really something where I can help other people, and make them happy.


Please, do yourself a favour, and consult a priest. You will never find peace posting here, especially if you have scrupulousity. Remember to mention this to him as well.


In terms of influencing your staff to work on Sunday, it appears that they would know that going in. It’s not like you personally have created the innovation of zoos being open on Sundays. I’m afraid that battle was lost 30-40 years ago.


Dude, I work the weekends and get paid well for it. I’m off Thursday and Friday. I rest those two days.

If you like the job and you’re being paid well, just take it!


Since it’s not sinful to work on Sunday, it’s not sinful to influence others to do so.


Just to reiterate what others have said.
Take 1 day off a week (or equivilant if your on shift patterns) to recharge your batteries. Try to get to mass at least once a week, whether that’s Sunday, Saturday or some other day it doesn’t matter. If you can’t make mass because the times don’t work out with your shifts don’t worry about it. God expects best endeavours, not the impossible.

So to answer your question- no. It does not violate your faith.


There are many occupations that require some people to work on Sunday. One of the positives of being Catholic is you can attend Mass on Saturday evenings (My husband does this as he is a union employee of the maintenance department of our city’s transit authority and some years his work days have included Sundays). Many catholic churches in my area offer mass as early at 6:00 am on Sunday morning, and as late at 9pm on Sunday night, ensuring that with a little effort we can all still “honor the Sabbath”, by attending church. Even if you are a firefighter on duty for 24-hours on a Sunday (6am to 6 am Monday), you still have the option of attending mass on Saturday.

Other than the above, I strongly encourage you to get assistance for your scruples.


It is commendable that you intend on not working Sundays and want to keep others from working Sundays. I do not think that you need to seek out a mental health professional for this. This is a good and holy thing. We are to try to make Sunday and holy days national holidays.

It does sound like the industry that you are wanting to work in though will help people to celebrate Sundays well. If this is the case then it seems a good thing. I think hotels and restaurants serve a purpose allowing others to relax on Sunday. I would probably avoid holding a work mandated training conference on a Sunday but normal family time in these industries would be a commendable thing.


If you don’t work on Sundays, someone will have to, and maybe that person would prefer not to as well. Hospitality is a field where Sunday work is absolutely required if one is to move up the ladder.


You do realize that Catholics, Christians, are not forbidden to do work on Sunday. We are not orthodox Jews.


We are supposed to honor the Lord’s day, right, and try to spend time with family, rest, recreate? Hard to do that at work.


In most of the jobs I have had, we did not work 18 hour shifts. There was time to rest and recreate either before or after work.


Yes it clearly does! It’s called the Sunday obligation- not the Friday, Wednesday or Saturday obligation- for a reason! Stop promoting mortal sin on a reputable Catholic forum. Actually, stop it full stop. And, if it was intentional, go to confession about it. Completely uncacceptable.

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