Mass and forgivness of sins

If attending Mass and eating the -]RC wafer/-] Catholic Eucharist is a sin forgiving sacrament then why are not mortal sins forgiven in the Mass? Are they not more important? Hence the re-presentation of Calvary which offers up the blood of Christ is to no avail in forgiving mortal sins. Are they not more important? What could be more important than the blood of Christ?

Please discontinue the offensive use of the term “wafer”. Use the term Eucharist or Host.

Keeing his commands.

He gave authority for the forgiveness of sins to the Apostles. Paul tells us not to eat and drink the Body and Blood while conscious of grave matter. One is to be reconciled FIRST.

Thanks for saying that, it really is offensive.

Is it really offensive? I did not know that. I’ll have to be sure to watch my vocab :open_mouth:

Baptism is more important (at least, for us).

We are saved by Christian Baptism ALONE:

By Baptism all sins are forgiven, original sin and all personal sins, as well as all punishment for sin. In those who have been reborn nothing remains that would impede their entry into the Kingdom of God, neither Adam’s sin, nor personal sin, nor the consequences of sin, the gravest of which is separation from God. (CCC, 1263)

A person who is not Baptized gains nothing by receiving Eucharist (and could be harmed).

Eucharist is important, but it is no substitute for Baptism. Eucharist alone cannot save anyone. But Christian Baptism can save everyone, even those who never receive Eucharist.

And, hey, waddya know - Christian Baptism is not actually limited to the Catholic Church!

I am somewhat amazed at your remarks from someone who says they are a Catholic. I do believe you are in error, first, because who would ever receive Holy Communion without being Baptized? And, although Baptism does forgive all sins committed before one is Baptized, very few-if any- human beings remain sinless after they are Baptized. Only Southern Baptists and some Protestant Fundamentalist Sects believe that Baptism cleans ones soul from sin for their entire life.
Because human beings do commit sins after they are Baptized, is why we, as Catholics, have the Sacrament of Confession.
I am a little surprised

Two different sacraments with two different purposes.

These articles of mine may help.

The Eucharist IS Scriptural
Catholic Confession
Scriptures About Penance

The Eucharist is not a “sin-forgiving sacrament” – only sacramental confession remits mortal sins.

However, in the penitential rite of the Mass, if a person has sincere sorrow for their ‘venial sins,’ they are forgiven without sacramental confession. Fr. Mitch Pacwa from EWTN confirmed this in his show just last week during the Q & A portion of the program, adding that the words in the Gloria and elsewhere in the liturgy also accomplish this.

It is always a good idea to mention them, however, whenever we go to confession, in order to gain the grace and strength to avoid them in the future.

In the same way that medicine and food help to strengthen and sustain the living but are of no avail to the dead, the spiritual medicine and food that is the Eucharist is of no avail to those who are spiritually dead from mortal sin.

Worthy reception of the Eucharist remits venial sins and preserves us from future sin.

My comment was made to refute the idea posted by the OP that Eucharist should remit mortal sins. Anyone in mortal sin should never even receive the Eucharist! Prior to worthy reception, the penitential rite absolves venial sins. Wouldn’t you agree that this is why the rite takes place PRIOR to reception of communion? Why else pray the Confiteor, followed by the Kyrie Eleison, followed by, May the Lord have mercy on us, forgive us our sins, and bring us to everlasting life.

Maybe you are referring to those times whenever a person receives the Eucharist outside of the Mass, as in the hospital, etc.

Thomas Aquinas expressed it this way, with regard to** venial **sins:“a movement of grace or charity suffices for its forgiveness.”
… and
“no infusion of fresh grace is required for the forgiveness of a venial sin, but it is enough to have an act proceeding from grace, in detestation of that venial sin, either explicit or at least implicit, as when one is moved fervently to God.”

Which is detailed as:1. Sacraments
2. Lord’s Prayer or general confession
3. movement of reverence for God and Divine things (for example: bishop’s blessing, sprinking of holy water, any sacramental anointing, a prayer said in a dedicated church, and anything else of the kind).

I really like this. I am becoming an ardent fan of Thomas Aquinas.

Well, hopefully, nobody, although I suppose that anyone who appears to be of sufficient age can hold out his/her hand to a Eucharistic Minister and receive Eucharist. One might imagine someone visiting a Catholic Mass, and feeling compelled to “go along” with what everyone else is doing.

And, although Baptism does forgive all sins committed before one is Baptized, very few-if any- human beings remain sinless after they are Baptized. Only Southern Baptists and some Protestant Fundamentalist Sects believe that Baptism cleans ones soul from sin for their entire life.

Actually, Southern Baptists do not teach any such thing. Despite the name of their denomination, they don’t actually believe that Baptism does anything at all. They believe in a “conversion experience” which is what “saves” them. Baptism (to them) is merely a public expression of a conversion and salvation that has already taken place.

(Oddly enough, although they don’t consider Baptism important, the Catholic Church normally accepts the Sacramental validity of all Southern Baptist Baptisms. My wife was Southern Baptist, and the Church accepted her Christian Baptism without question. The Catholic Church regards their Baptism even more highly than they do.)

Because human beings do commit sins after they are Baptized, is why we, as Catholics, have the Sacrament of Confession.

I don’t dispute the confession bit, but I would ask you to CITE your idea that “very few-if any- human beings remain sinless after they are Baptized” or your notion that “human beings DO commit sins after they are Baptized” (emphasis mine). And I presume you refer to mortal sin, since this is the only sin that can endanger our salvation. So I am asking you to CITE any Church teaching that we are likely to fall into post-Baptismal mortal sin.

If I were to propose the idea that is is HIGHLY UNLIKELY that ANYONE (protestant or Catholic) will commit post-Baptismal mortal sin, could you CITE some doctrine of the Church, or some teaching of any Saint or Doctor, that would prove me wrong?

I happen to know that you cannot. Because this is the “hot topic” in modern Catholic theological circles. That means that there is no settled doctrine, one way or another.

I am a little surprised

Well, every once in a while, the Church surprises us both.

David, your proposition is sounding dangerously like the heresy of the Fundamental Option. How does your position differ from this serious theological error regarding mortal sin?

Well, first of all, I am not convinced that the Church has designated this idea a “heresy.” The word does not occur in the article you cited from Fr. Zuhlsdorf. This is your word, not his, and not the Church’s. YOU don’t get to decide what is “heresy.”

Second of all, I have not actually stated a position in this thread (so I have no position whatsoever to differentiate from this “heresy”).

I have only asked the poster to CITE Catholic doctrine. To help the poster understand my request, I have proposed a “what if” question - “what if” I said that it was unlikely for a person of good will to fall into post-Baptismal mortal sin? Could the poster (or you) actually CITE anything that would prove me wrong?

My “position” is that the Church has not taught one way or another (and I have not advanced any opinion of my own in this regard). I’m pretty sure that my “position” is correct (ie, there is no Church doctrine here), but I am always open to learning doctrine that I have not been aware of.

Cardinal Arinze spoke against the Fundamental Option here.

[quote=“Francis Cardinal Arinze”]That is not correct Catholic doctrine. They are not even good theologians. … The Third Commandment is a serious one. It is not a joke.

Arinze, speaking about the simple matter of Mass attendance on Sundays. While we cannot be sure that everyone who fails to attend is committing a mortal sin, when a person fails to do so out of “simple laziness”, “do not expect any comfort from any theologian.”

Jimmy Akin dispels the arguments saying that mortal sin is a rare occurrence here.

[quote=“Jimmy Akin”]A while back I was reading an interview with Pre-16 in which he was taking note of this greater optimism and saying that we may hope (note the word “hope”) that a large majority of people today are saved and that only a few go to hell.

If that’s the case then it has implications for how we read the criteria for mortal sin. You have to say that those who are properly catechized have a greater chance of getting to heaven than those who don’t (otherwise catechesis and evangelization would harm the good of souls, and we can’t say that), so you can’t chalk the optimism up to the fact that more people don’t know their faith. Neither do we have evidence that more people suffer from psychological impediments than in the past (it’s almost certainly the opposite).

So if you want to be more optimistic than previously about salvation then you’d have to say that it’s harder than previously thought to commit mortal sin or easier than previously thought to be reconciled with God–or (more likely) both.

Like I said, I’d love this to be true, but I’m not comfortable with saying that it is. Consequently, I fall back on the principle of erring on the side of caution and assuming in my own life that the traditional understanding of these matters is correct.


I think it is plain to see, if we look around ourselves, widespread dissent from clear Catholic teachings, willful disobedience to Divine Law, and poor catechesis among all kinds of Christians about what Church teachings actually are. I cannot see how to reconcile that with an optimistic outlook that mortal sin is extremely hard and rare to commit and that a majority of adults retain a state of grace long after their baptism and unto death and salvation and Heavenly bliss. I don’t see how we can reconcile that with a requirement to confess mortal sins and an encouragement to frequently celebrate the Sacrament of Penance.

Frequent, worthy reception of the Eucharist remits venial sins and preserves us from all future sin. But it’s not a sure remedy. Catholics do not believe in a doctrine of “Once Saved, Always Saved.” We believe in concupiscence and the tendency of a fallen man to fall back into sin and the need to always be called to repentance and holiness by the Church and by Christ who instituted the Sacraments for our salvation.

I hope you believe in the truth of the Bible. Because Sacred Scripture should be enough to show you that mortal sin is common and not so rare at any time in salvation history:
[BIBLEDRB]Matthew 7:13-14[/BIBLEDRB]

You’re right on this, David, and for this I must apologize. For what we have here only has the potential to be a heresy, and is not, materially, a heresy in itself, because we both know that the Catechism defines this as “the obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith, or it is likewise an obstinate doubt concerning the same.”

The truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith is (CCC #1857) the Three Conditions for mortal sin: (1) grave matter, (2) full knowledge, and (3) full consent of the will. The Fundamental Option denies the truth of at least #3. Father Z calls it an “error”. Cardinal Arinze calls it “not correct Catholic doctrine”. I would say that a Cardinal Archbishop who is Prefect Emeritus of the Dicastery of the Holy See which oversees worship and the administration of the sacraments, is a reliable source for what is, and what isn’t, correct Catholic doctrine. Incorrect doctrine, or error, as Father Z calls it, is potential heresy in the making if it is not recanted and denied and reproved by proclaiming the truth. In this case, that truth is the Three Conditions, especially #3, full consent of the will.

So I apologize for bringing up a dirty word, my use of it was somewhat unwarranted given the circumstance, and I shall henceforth use the words “error” and “not correct Catholic doctrine” to describe the Fundamental Option.

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