If I have not gone to Confession for this, may I still receive Communion ?

Hello. I am feeling a bit conflicted regarding masturbation. Recently, I went to confession and the priest scolded me severely for my sin of masturbation. I go to Mass daily and try to be strong and virtuous, but eventually, I fall.
I had confessed to masturbation, then he asked me if I had received communion between when I masturbated and that day I was confessing, so I said yes.
He was very upset and raised his voice saying I had committed a great and punishable sin.
When I said I didn’t know it was a mortal sin, he said "then you’re not culpable, but from now on, if you should fall again into this terrible sin, you must abstain from communion until you can receive the sacrament of reconciliation.
I am conflicted because I attended a lecture on sexual sins and the Church. It was presented by a very well known and respected and traditional Monsignor. During this conference, he said that because the Church has not explicitly forbidden communion to people in the state of the sin of masturbation, he would advice those who fall into this sin to yes, pray and continue to strive to overcome it, but also, to not abstain from the great and abounding graces that the body and blood of Christ can grant to the receiver in order to gain the strength and virtues necessary to overcome masturbation.
I have read all the arguments in this site about traditionalists saying “yes, you should definitely abstain”, but I haven’t yet heard one person citing any official Church mandate explicitly addressing the Church’s mandate to abstain from communion when in the state of sin for having masturbated.
Every “you should” statement is based on an interpretation of what the Catechism says about this sin, but there’s nothing that says something along the lines of “Mother Church teaches (or says) one should not receive communion…”
I would like to know what the exact answer is and to see a concrete statement, not re-interpretations based on conjectures or assumptions.
Thank you very much.

Dear friend,

The Church teaches that masturbation is the deliberate stimulation of the genital organs to derive sexual pleasure and is an intrinsically disordered action. “The deliberate use of the sexual faculty, for whatever reason, outside of marriage is essentially contrary to its purpose.” This is from #2352 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. In # 1856 it further states: “When the will sets itself upon something that is of its nature incompatible with the charity that orients man toward his ultimate end, then the sin is mortal by its very object…” The object of masturbation is certainly not charity or the attaining of union with God. Your respected, traditional monsignor is not traditional enough! The Church has been clear about this for a long, long time. It has NEVER taught that one need not be in the state of grace to receive Holy Communion.

It is VERY easy for one to slip into the habit of masturbation. Once this happens, it IS difficult to stop, but not impossible! You can be sure that whenever one gives oneself the slightest excuse or rationalization, one will fall every time. But if one will not let himself “go there” in his mind, he can overcome such a habit with God’s help. God will help you if you really want to be faithful to Him.

What you have to shoot for my friend, is to be as faithful to Him with your body as He was faithful to you with His. This means that you turn the focus of your life from yourself to Him. He becomes your center. Below is a reflection on His Passion to help you focus. You are in my prayers.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

Reflection on the Passion of Our Lord, Jesus Christ

The agony in the garden was really the agony in His mind. He suffered the passion in His mind before He suffered it in His body—to the point of actually affecting the latter by sweating blood. From here on, the mental and physical suffering played off each other and caused Him greater pain. At the base of all His suffering was the one thing that human beings dread the most: rejection. He was betrayed by Judas, denied by Peter and abandoned by all the rest of His Apostles; those He had hand-picked as His closest intimates. He was most rejected by those who put Him to death. They not only wanted Him dead, they wanted Him more than dead. They wanted Him to suffer. This significance was not lost on Him. He felt fully the rejection as each physical agony reminded Him.

So we thank Him for joining us on our human journey and actually choosing to experience what we fear the most. We thank Him for enduring the arrest and the cruelty of the guards and the Sanhedrin. We thank Him for enduring the cruelty of Pilate who allowed Him to be executed rather than risk his own political ruin—and for the cruelty of Herod who considered Him not worth his time. We thank Him for all the time He spent satisfying their preoccupation with themselves, just delaying His ultimate death. We thank Him for the anxiety of that night in a cell.

The next morning He was brutally scourged with whips with nobs at the end, and finally with whips with hooks that gouged out chunks of flesh. There was blood everywhere. The loss of so much blood not only severely weakened Him; it also caused a severe, throbbing headache that remained with Him for the duration.

We thank Him for this and for the mockery He received when they put a filthy purple cloth on His shoulders and open wounds. The Shroud of Turn tells us that the cap-like crown of thorns caused ‘the worst pain that man is heir to; devastating and unbearable.” This in addition to the headache he already had. Then they blindfolded Him and battered His forehead, brow, right upper lip, jaw and dislocated His nose; insisting that He ‘prophesy’ who had hit Him. Yet they were the ones who couldn’t see. Then they spat on Him.

He stood at the praetorium in utter disgrace according to the attitude of the crowd—while in reality, He stood in utter glory: almighty God, being present to every person who has ever suffered rejection, joining them in their moment of pain. It was there that He was sentenced to death by crucifixion. Physically, He was utterly miserable. He revealed to St. Bernard that carrying the cross was His most painful agony. He was so weak and thirsty, the pressure and trauma of the crown of thorns and blows to His head made the weight of the cross almost unbearable. Scripture tells us that He fell down three times on the stone streets that were filthy with animal dung—with the cross on top of Him. But the Shroud shows that He fell many, many times. And He got up each time.

It was only with the help of Simon of Cyrene that He made it to the top of Calvary. The Shroud tells us that the nailing to the cross caused (causalgia), agonizing pain like lightening bolts traversing the arms and the legs. After three hours of hanging there, his body just gave out. The Shroud gives as the cause of death: “cardiac and respiratory arrest due to hypovolemic and traumatic shock, due to crucifixion.” Transcending time, the moment of His death covers every human person who has ever lived or will live, but it also remains IN time as the Eucharist, present to us on the altars and in the tabernacles of the world.

We thank you, Lord. We adore you and we praise you. By your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

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