Here’s a copy of the email I sent to the Cathedral and to the Office of the Archbishop. I recycled some of the things from this thread:
I have a very serious concern about advice I received in confession at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Kingston today. I’m going to speak very explicitly; I confessed to the sin of masturbation.
Once I confessed this, the priest told me very clearly that masturbation was not a sin. Here are his words as best as I can remember them:
“I went on sabbatical recently and consulted with other priests about masturbation, to discover its status as a sin. The view of masturbation has changed dramatically. It’s very different from what I was taught in seminary many years ago. We just don’t talk about masturbation anymore. It’s part of human nature, and people cannot be held responsible for acting according to their nature. The church’s position on this changed after Vatican II. We now know that mortal sin is extremely rare. To commit a mortal sin, you have to genuinely hate God. Virtually no one commits mortal sin.”
This is a serious violation of Catholic teaching on human sexuality. This is what the Catechism of the Catholic Church says on the subject:
2352 "By masturbation is to be understood the deliberate stimulation of the genital organs in order to derive sexual pleasure. “Both the Magisterium of the Church, in the course of a constant tradition, and the moral sense of the faithful have been in no doubt and have firmly maintained that masturbation is an intrinsically and gravely disordered action.” “The deliberate use of the sexual faculty, for whatever reason, outside of marriage is essentially contrary to its purpose.” For here sexual pleasure is sought outside of “the sexual relationship which is demanded by the moral order and in which the total meaning of mutual self-giving and human procreation in the context of true love is achieved.”
2396 “Among the sins gravely contrary to chastity are masturbation, fornication, pornography, and homosexual practices.”
This teaching cannot be reconciled with what the priest told me. The priest’s teaching on the frequency of mortal sin is also contrary to the teaching of the church. I’m requesting that the Archbishop speak to the priests of the Cathedral about this and give them orthodox Catholic instruction. I’m sorry if I seem to be overstepping my bounds as a simple parishioner, but I will not drop this subject until I’ve been given assurances that some action has been taken to deal with this. I’m extremely worried about the kind of instruction others are getting. This kind of thing can do serious harm to so many people. To confirm someone in their sin is to commit a real violence against them.