Having trouble coping with the concept of after-death after my sins


#1

Still not sure on correct forums to post questions/comments:confused: Sorry this is long…

I am just recently getting back into the Catholic faith. I am 23, and was raised by a chaotic family that was a mix between half hazard protestant mother, and so called Catholic father. I did receive all my sacraments late.

At 17, I dropped out of school and began a road to many mistakes and grave sins. After 3 years of misery I began to turn my life around, get into college, and got a good job. I am now on my last year of my undergraduate and planning on law school. I want to be a lawyer that can advocate issues in line with Catholic views.

When I got a promotion at my job I was working with somebody very religious and he basically revived my feelings for Jesus and the Catholic Church. Long story but I could not stop asking questions, I started carrying a rosary, and the rest was history.

I have been reading and reading and trying to get myself back. I feel I am much closer to God at this point. Even had some very strange events that God was with me but that is another thread. I called my local Church on Thursday and left a message for the priest to have confession face to face and get some guidance on getting back. I have not been to confession since my first penance.

So, after talking and reading I have now come to the reality of how evil some of my sins were. Not sure I even close to knew at the time except they were bad. I have such guilt that sometimes when I watch EWTN and Mother Angelica talks about some of the things I have done; or Fr. Corapi, I will sit there and cry for a while because I have so much guilt I can’t even stand to hear it.

I will admit that I am very afraid of death. I feel like no matter what I do God is not going to forgive me. Now I realize this is not what is taught but is how I feel. I feel like no matter what I do, what I have done in the past is too bad and I am still not perfect. To be even more honest when I was going through these difficult years I impregnated a girlfriend and was all for an abortion. At the time, I just figured it was the right thing but now that I am more in touch with my faith I can not get over this guilt…I feel no matter how much I practice my faith I am going to pay dearly. I accept responsibility that I am just as at fault being the man in the equation. I am also ashamed to admit this to the priest, but I will.

I really need some guidance…Any advice is appreciated. I pray for people in purgatory on a daily basis now because I feel this is where I will be. Although I realize people in purgatory are saved, I am extremely scared and do not want it to happen.

How do other Catholic’s that have done wrong at some time in their life cope with this? The teachings of Jesus are loving but are also harsh for sinners and I can’t get over it. The feeling of constant guilt is unbearable since coming closer to God. I hope that getting back to mass and receiving communion (after confession) will alleviate some of the pain.

Thank you

On a side note, is this a full online version of the bible? whereinthebible.org/index.php?passage=Genesis

I don’t have much money to buy one right now. Thanks to this site I will not be reading what I have. I had no idea that NIV was not a Catholic accepted Bible. It was given to me by a protestant aunt.


#2

Tomm,

God bless you.

From one revert to another I want to say this to you:

You have rallied around the standard of your King. We owe Him our lives and all that we have. Not only that but the battle rages on and every soldier is needed.

It doesn’t matter what you have done in the past, as long as you repent, seek forgivness, and reform you life. That is an ongoing process to be sure. But, as I said, it doesn’t matter what you have done in your past, you are the King’s man now right? If you must suffer some in this life, offer it to Him as penance for your prior behavior. If you must be purified in the next life, you will do it gratefully and with joy. Think of it as a soldier’s wounds being tended too before entering the King’s throneroom after the war.

So, the battle is joined. All that matters is how you fight now, and who’s standard you look up and see as you close your eyes for the last time.

I hope my words are encouraging. Be assured of my prayer for you.

VC


#3

Tomm,

Yes, I believe that is a good full online bible. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has the New American Bible online as well at: nccbuscc.org/nab/bible/

This is the translation that is used in the readings at Mass in the United States. (at least in the ordinary form – I’m actually not sure about the extraordinary form of the mass)

VC


#4

Thank you very much. Everybody I talk to who is a real Catholic is encouraging! I say “real” because I talk to so many who say they are Catholic but have less knowledge of it than me in my short time, and have not been to confession or mass in a long time. This includes my father which I am trying to change. I guess it is overwhelming when you realize just how much you have done wrong. On the other side, I feel blessed that I had the oppurtunity to work with somebody that was a major influence in bringing me back.

I just have to find a way to get over the fear of judgement and death. Although I say I am afraid of purgatory, I guess I am really afraid of not even going there. I am afraid 'that everything I have done is so bad that I will be in hell to suffer.

That is not the only reason I am getting into the religion. I am because I truly believe and I guess I have a “healthy” fear of God because I know it is real.

I feel I can do a lot of good with the blessings I have been given. You should see what it is like when I go to an ethics class in college. It appears that 70% of people in my classes are completely denying God’s teachings. The younger generation is very lost and I am going to do what I can to uphold Catholic values.


#5

Also…I have such a strong passion to make right with God now but I also feel a bit overwhelmed with all that is asked of you through the faith. I feel like I am sinning so much after learning what the Church says is a sin:o


#6

Tomm,

You are responding to God’s grace. Rely on Him.

I’m sure that many of us will be praying for you for your second confession. The priest should be able to guide you.

Above all keep praying!

VC


#7

Thank You:)


#8

Welcome Home
how do Catholics deal with this?
by accepting, nay, wallowing in the Divine Mercy and boundless graces of Jesus Christ in the sacraments.
Yes, after confessing your sins and returning to Mass and communion, Christ will alleviate your pain and fear. He said, come unto me all that are weary and heavily burdened. The sooner you get to confession the sooner you will find peace. Jesus’ teaching is not harsh, it is the only kindness and mercy you will find in this world or the next, and it is boundless, endless, eternal kindness and mercy.


#9

Dovetailing on what PuzzleAnnie said, I would suggest you pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet, as well as the Rosary. When I pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet, I meditate on the Sorrowful Mysteries. It’s a constant reminder of what Jesus did for me and that He must truly love me and desire my salvation.

God bless you.


#10

:knight1: Amen! God Blees you Tomm God is molding you! Welcome back from battle!:knight1:


#11

Ephesians 6

The Armor of God
10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.

11Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.

12For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

13Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.

14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,

15and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.

16In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.

17Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.

19Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel,

20for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.


#12

Dear brother Tom,

Have you ever meditated on the life of St. Paul. He MURDERED Christians and was even gleeful about it. Look at the awesome mercy and forgiveness the Lord had FOR HIM!!!

I would like to share something with you. Many years ago, I was in the same situation as you regarding your girlfriend. In fact, I even DROVE my girlfriend to the abortion clinic. Can you imagine the guilt I felt? I’m sure you can. The Sacrament of Reconciliation, however, filled me with the grace of God to overcome my guilt. If you have not yet gone to confession upon returning to the faith (it sounds like you have not), then please take advantage of this great Sacrament, which actually applies the forgiveness that our Lord purchased for us from the Cross. He DIED FOR US, brother! Can you imagine the love God has for you? God has INFINITE love for you, brother! You will have a life-changing experience when you go to confession.

I pray right now, and I ask my fellow Catholics to pray with me, that our brother may find a holy, humble, and understanding priest for his confession.

Praise our Lord for He is Risen and has saved us from our sins!

Blessings with much sympathy,
Marduk


#13

It probably hurts God more for you to think that your sins are so great that He will not forgive you.

I write this as a Non-Catholic waiting for the day to confess my sins, to become squeaky clean, to allow my guilts to be released. I can not wait! I will offer my suffering for you today.

My friend, make an appointment with a priest, go to confession and allow all the Sacraments of the Church to soak up your guilt…allow the Sacraments to fill you up with God’s graces and by doing this, your guilt will seem light years in the past.

I will pray for you.


#14

Thank you for everybodys support and prayers. I left a message for the priest at my local Church on Thursday. I am sure he is very busy so I am going to give it another day or so. I don’t want to be rude and call again.


#15

TommD

So much Good advise and support.
I have little to add except this:

God may move you to make some amends. I encourage you to do you best to comply. They may be direct or indirect amends but they can go far toward alleviating the guilts you feel.

You feel guilty because, even though you’ve returned to the Church you still feel your life is out of balance because of the “sins” committed when you were away. Trust in Jesus to lead you, but remember that the Holy Spirit works in his own time. Be patient with yourself.

Let us Pray:
Lord take Tom’s hand and lead him to peace. Make your will for him known and soften the pain of his journey. Lead him to the answers he needs and show him your complete and firm forgiveness.

Also I have a prayer I found in an old missel which I love and pray regularly:

Anima Christi
Soul of Christ, be my sanctification;
Body of Christ, be my Salvation;
Blood of Christ, Fill all my veins;
Water from Christ’s side, wash wash out my stains;
Passion of Christ, my comfort be,
O good Jesus listen to me.
In Thy wounds I fain would hide,
Ne’er to be parted from Thy side.
Guard me when the foe assails me;
Guide me when my feet shall fail me;
Bid me come to Thee above,
With Thy Saints to sing Thy love, forever and ever
Amen

Blessings

James


#16

Welcome back home. :slight_smile: God is pleased at your humility and passion for Him. We are all amazed how God works mysteriously in people drawing them home as He has done with you. Your humility is certainly a great example and encouragement to us for by the grace of God we all stand. In Luke 18:10-14 God was pleased by the humility of the collector before Him, but not pleased at the Pharisee who wasn’t.
Everyone to some degree fears purgatory, we have all sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (Rom 3:23). At times I fear it also but I also recognize that those in purgatory will be saved so that they are looking toward the beatific vision and will be there eventually. Also, the Catholic church speaks of purgatory being different from the punishment of hell, (CCC 1031). One can thus conclude that this purgation is tolerable, and doesn’t involve the weeping and gnashing of teeth, since that term refers to the Hebraic sense of those who cry with remorse and anger and curse at God in their state.
Purgatory IS tolerable and will end at some point and as you said, everyone who goes to purgatory goes to the beatific vision of heaven.
I look at purgatory (most of the time mind you) that it is something I am very likely to experience, yet something I try (with God’s grace) to avoid. Nevertheless either way, if I die without being in a state of mortal sin, I WILL be in God’s care and He has a plan to expiate me out of that state/place called the communion of Saints. Don’t give up on your Catholic faith, Mt 10:22. :slight_smile:


#17

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