Is helping someone move on Sundays servile labor/mortal sin?

I am a college student, My home is an hour from my college and the end of the semester is this coming week and I will need to move all my stuff home. My Mom suggested that my brother and dad come out tomorrow (Sunday) to move the bulk of my stuff out to make it easier when I leave later this week since only my mom will be able to pick me up and my brother and Dad will be able to get my stuff quicker and easier. However I told my mom that it was ok because in my head I didn’t want my brother and Dad committing sin by performing unnecessary labor on a Sunday. She immediately pointed out that it would make it easier for all of us to move the stuff earlier and with more help. So should I honor my mother’s thoughts?

So I guess my problem is figuring out if this would be a mortal sin(and if it were I’d be an accomplice) It isn’t strictly “necessary” that my stuff gets moved out on Sunday since I’m not leaving til later in the week. But it’s still necessary that it gets moved eventually, so I’m having trouble with the necessary/unnecessary part.

Also I’ve heard that its a mortal sin to do unnecessary labor for more than a few hours.


I would say that if you can do it at any other time during the week, then you should not do it on a Sunday, not matter how “easier” it is.

Some might disagree, but I would doubt that moving your things from college to home is servile labor. It might be considered an act of charity for your father and brother to help you move, especially if it saves your mother from later work.

This is not daily labor, or labor for money. If you move on Sunday with the help of your father and brother, you will be saving your mother a great deal of trouble. It would be a shame if the men said “Oh, no, we mustn’t work on Sunday, that would be a sin,” and then, feeling very self-righteous, they settled down to watch the football game on TV, while Mom gets stuck with the heavy lifting later that week.

Would this passage apply?
Luke 13:10-17 New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition

Jesus Heals a Crippled Woman

Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the sabbath. And just then there appeared a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years. She was bent over and was quite unable to stand up straight. When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said, “Woman, you are set free from your ailment.” When he laid his hands on her, immediately she stood up straight and began praising God. But the leader of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had cured on the sabbath, kept saying to the crowd, “There are six days on which work ought to be done; come on those days and be cured, and not on the sabbath day.” But the Lord answered him and said, “You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger, and lead it away to give it water? And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen long years, be set free from this bondage on the sabbath day?” When he said this, all his opponents were put to shame; and the entire crowd was rejoicing at all the wonderful things that he was doing.
These paragraphs from the CCC may be helpful as well (the bold emphasis is mine):
2172 God’s action is the model for human action. If God “rested and was refreshed” on the seventh day, man too ought to “rest” and should let others, especially the poor, “be refreshed.” The sabbath brings everyday work to a halt and provides a respite.** It is a day of protest against the servitude of work and the worship of money.**

2173 The Gospel reports many incidents when Jesus was accused of violating the sabbath law. But Jesus never fails to respect the holiness of this day. He gives this law its authentic and authoritative interpretation: “The sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath.” With compassion, Christ declares the sabbath for doing good rather than harm, for saving life rather than killing. The sabbath is the day of the Lord of mercies and a day to honor God. “The Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.”

You are helping someone, that is fine.

Jesus healed and performed various miracles on the Sabbath. Doing good deeds are always allowed no matter what the day.

Why would a good deed be forbidden?

This doesn’t make any sense. :shrug:

It isn’t just “easier.” It is so his mother doesn’t have to do it all. So that his father and brother can help with the heavy stuff.

I agree.

How could anyone think it is a sin?

singer878, what did you and your family decide on?

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