Is it a sin to make a child do work (chores) on Sunday?

As a consequence for a series of misbehaviors tonight (Saturday evening), I assigned my 5-year-old a full basket of towels and baby clothes to fold. There was no time to make her do it tonight since the bad behavior happened right before bed. Would I be sinning if I make her do it tomorrow on Sunday? I myself do not wash or fold laundry on Sundays. I feel that the consequence will be more effective if she has to do it tomorrow morning before any playtime or fun activities, but if it would be a sin I’ll have her do it on Monday instead.

peccator81 ** : “I assigned** my 5-year-old a full basket of towels and baby clothes to fold… Would I be sinning if I make her do it tomorrow on Sunday?”**

No sin here.

Each person decides (for herself) what things are OK to do on a Sunday.
So, unless your Daughter has her OWN Belief on the Subject, then she can work-off “punishment” on Sunday morning, bright and early (whether or not YOU would fold those same Towels, based upon your Beliefs for yourself).**

I don’t know about that first reply. I mean, how can a 5 year old have their own belief about something like that?
I think you have to look at what God requires of us - to keep the Sabbath holy. To do no unnecessary work. I would say, in my opinion, folding laundry is unnecessary in this instance. If I were the one making the decision, I would hold off for Monday. :twocents:

Irish Rush said** : “I don’t know about that first reply. I mean, how can a 5 year old have their own belief about something like that?”**

I assumed that, but listed it (just in case), to point out that her 5-year-old AIN’T GOT ANY present Beliefs that could be stepped on, to enforce the Folding “penance.”

And, "I think you have to look at what God requires of us - to keep the Sabbath holy.
To do no unnecessary work. I would say, in my opinion, folding laundry is unnecessary in this instance.
If I were the one making the decision, I would hold off for Monday."

Yeah, just like I said, each person gets to decide what is OK to do on Sunday.

Jesus taught, the Sabbath was made for Man … NOT that man is made for the Sabbath.
This way, His hungry Apostles could “harvest” some Grain, and eat it, on the Sabbath.

I (mostly) do NO Work on Sunday … but, if the situation arises, I WILL Work.
This is Especially so, when I am visiting an out-of-Town Relative or Friend. I may Cook, or Clean, or do other Chores.
If nothing else, Sunday Working reminds me that I SHOULD HAVE done it on Saturday … but, that I am a Procrastinator.

The good Lord thoroughly supports parents punishing their kids as needed. Hooboy, does he support 'em. Of course, if it bothers you, I’m sure you can think of something punish-y that can be done on Sunday without involving work.

The further away a punishment for misbehavior is from the time it happened, the less effective it is. I personally would make her do it tomorrow morning before she did anything else. I would not consider this like the work an adult does–it is reaping the consequences of her behavior, and you are just carrying out your parental duties.

Also, if you told her it had to be done in the morning, you should stand by your word so she learns you mean business and that you always keep your word. Besides, it is not fair to keep the threat of punishment hanging over her head for a whole day–just have her do it and be done with it. There is absolutely no sin involved.

I agree with CB about the temporal relationship to the offense. Waiting another day would water down the effect of the punishment.

This is more about the punishment and less about the work. It is not like you are asking to randomly do chores.

Since what a 5 year-old will do won’t take a few hours, then I would make sure her punishment happens as soon as possible after the incident. There is no sin.

I made her do it Sunday morning. It took her 30 minutes, which is within venial sin territory regarding Sunday work time limits. My understanding is that over 2 hours of unnecessary work on Sunday is a mortal sin, and I didn’t make her do anywhere near that much. I may mention it in Confession anyway, but for now I’m ok with my decision.

Not to dispute you, but can you tell me where you got those time limits from? I have been a practicing Catholic for 65 years and never heard that. I have not seen this in the Catechism, either. Thank you.

I can’t remember where I first heard that, but it’s been my working belief for awhile. Here are a couple homilies where the priests mention it, and one also mentions that it’s in the writings of St Alphonsus.

audiosancto.org/sermon/20070729-Keeping-Sunday-Holy.html

audiosancto.org/sermon/20040104-The-2nd-and-3rd-Commandments-Our-Lady-of-La-Sallette.html

Please know that there are no “time limits”, and these are simply the opinions of the priest giving the homily, and even of St. Alphonsus. This is not formal Catholic teaching by any stretch of the imagination.

Remember that even Jesus did what was regarded as “work” on the Sabbath, e.g., healing. We do what must be done and do the best we can.

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