How do I explain mortal sins?


#1

I understand what Mortal sins are, and how you can’t really definitively say what specific sins are mortal, but is there a list or something somewhere that tells you what some common mortal sins are?

Like maybe it’s a guide to Reconciliation, and they give ideas of what could fit under each commandment.


#2

catholicparents.org/oxcart/Examination%20of%20Conscience.pdf

Lame examinations of conscience do more harm than good, IMHO. They confuse people and end up de-valuing this healing sacrament. The above link takes you to the best examination of conscience that I’ve seen. I use it myself.

You might also check out Moral Theology (Jone). It is very user friendly and extremely detailed (if you want advice, it’s in there).


#3

This may be helpful: catholicculture.org/library/view.cfm?recnum=3635

Its purpose is a long-term plan of self-improvement (concentrating on one virtue per month), but it does give a lot of examples of mortal and venial sins.

I was really surprised at a few of the sins that are listed as mortal (has our society changed that much since it was written in 1942?). In any case, it’s good to have a trustworthy priest-confessor, and if you are unsure as to whether something is mortal or venial, ask him. And certainly confess it if you think it might be mortal.

(Note: lists like this should probably be avoided by persons suffering from scrupulosity.)


#4

This is more so that I can more easily explain mortal sins. People commonly misunderstand mortal sin, and they think it’s only when you kill somebody, or cheat on your spouse, robbing a bank, or something like that. So people are like, “OMG! Why aren’t you going to Communion? Did you kill somebody?”


#5

To know what specific sins are mortal, look at the 10 Commandments. They have that name because they were not the 10 suggestions.
Deacon Ed B


#6

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