Laughing at Uncharitable Jokes

So I brought up the world’s heaviest man ever and a co-worker made some fat jokes making fun of the heaviest man ever. I laughed because they were funny.

This seems like a venial sin at best because nothing was thought out. I just said something and I laughed because I found something funny, even though it was uncharitable.

I was talking to a priest last night at confession and he said something I’ll remember. He said something along the lines of “Before we sin we are at a crossroad, to sin or not to sin.” This made me realize sin is a choice. We choose to sin. If we didn’t choose to sin, then how could our “sin” possibly be mortal? It would probably be venial I guess.

Please help me clear up some confusion. Thanks! :thumbsup:

What are you confused about?

Laughing at the joke. I’m having trouble judging myself. I can’t tell whether it’s a mortal sin or not. How does one tell when something is grave matter or not?

The Church has described some of them explicitly, the rest we discern with common sense. Do you think that laughing at a joke is serious enough to deprive you of grace for eternity? I think if you ask that question with a healthy dose of common sense you’ll have your answer. :slight_smile:

First, why did you bring up the topic of the world’s heaviest man unless you wanted comments?
You started it.
I think that’s why you feel guilty about it.

While you may not have committed a mortal sin-only your priest can answer that-it sure isn’t very nice to mock someone because of their weight, race, religion, greed or disabilities. It happens all the time and could also be a form of bullying. Don’t open yourself up to mocking others. Become better than that. Be a leader in the proper sense rather than just one of the crowd. Keep in mind that the crowd was happy to call for the death of Jesus when He stood before Pilate. In life we will be liked by some and reviled by others or just non-descript nobodies that just cruise though life. Be the example that I know you can be. That does not mean you are to be made of stone or not able to find joy in your journey. Just chose your entertainment wisely and do no harm. Peace

Guys, bear in mind OP has a raging case of scrupulosity

First of all I am not a “guy.” Secondly I have made a personal commitment to try to respond with kinder, gentler comments here within CA. Thirdly. I know the poster is really trying to find his grounding in the church and in life. Fourthly, CA… IS, or should be… a forum where one can come for advice and support…Right?? Peace

Let’s not talk about him like he can’t hear us.
Most of us are very familiar with this young man and his problems.
Many try to help.

I have practical advice. Throw out the Guinness book of records.

As far as choosing to sin, sometimes we blurt out inane comments, then wish we had kept them to ourselves.

I apologize if I offended you. Where I come from, “you guys” is a casual term used to address a group of people, and doesn’t necessarily imply gender. Similar to “y’all.” I agree that the OP is trying to find his grounding, and that CAF should be a place of support and advice. That’s what I was trying to do for the OP.

OP, the reason I didn’t give you a direct answer is because I was trying to prompt you to think through this yourself. I don’t mean any of this as an insult, but you often come to CAF with variations on the same question: is x (where x is usually something pretty trivial) a mortal sin? With respect, you kind of need to develop your own moral compass here. I know you know the requirements for mortal sin intellectually, but you seem to have a difficult time applying them to concrete events in your life. To use a musical analogy (you’re a musician, right?) you seem to know the words but not the music. You get what sin is on paper, but you don’t really seem to get it internally. That’s why I suggested you apply some common sense. I think if you do that, you’ll arrive at the conclusion that laughing at an uncharitable joke, while not a particularly nice thing to do, is not sufficiently serious to cut yourself off from God. If I were you, I’d just make a mental note to be mindful of people’s feelings and not make jokes at the expense of others, and move on.

Don’t approach the faith like a spreadsheet. Just my advice.

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