Mortal Sins - church

Can someone list or tell me where I can find all mortal sins that have to do with church attendance, communion, etc?

There was something I read (on this forum I believe) that I never knew was a mortal sin, but I forgot what it was.

Thank you!

I would read what the Catholic Catechism says. It is a beautiful writing! if you do not have

this book, here is a link to online

There are others online, this is just one. I liked it because it has a search feature.

God Bless

If you have to ask, it’s not a mortal sin…

I think she probably means grave sins. It’s very possible to sin with grave matter without realizing the gravity of the situation.

No that would not be the right approach - it is simply the case that formation of conscience can take some time and of course there are things that are mortal sins that people have never heard of.


Mortal sins and grave sins are the same sin.

Referring to the sin itself - “murder is mortal sin (grave sin)” or referring to the culpability of the person “I committed a mortal sin (grave sin) for I did this with full knowledge and deliberate consent”

But yes the use of the term “grave matter” can be helpful.

There is not an exhaustive list (man creates new ones…like human cloning). One will though find information in the Catechism etc.

If you have a question -ones confessor can guide one.

I should’ve said grave matter. I don’t think it is accurate to say, “Murder is a mortal sin” because it depends on the other conditions you mentioned. I think of “grave sin” as being a synonym for “a sin of grave matter,” not “a mortal sin.”

Yes it is quite accurate to say “murder is a mortal sin” - when one is speaking of the nature of the sin. Removed from any person committing it - the sin in itself. Adultery is a mortal sin.

Yes murder is a mortal sin.

And yes mortal sin = grave sin = serious sin. They are synonyms (see the Catholic Dictionary on line by Fr. John Hardon under “mortal sin”).

Remember there is the nature of the sin itself (objective sense):

One can simply say “Torture is a mortal sin” (grave sin, serious sin). Referring to the nature of the sin.

And there is the question of culpability - of “committing a mortal sin”. (subjective sense).

In order to “commit” a mortal sin one needs grave matter, full knowledge and deliberate consent. Sam says “I committed a mortal sin when I tortured him”.

Or Sue judges “I did not commit a mortal sin when I missed Mass that time - for I honestly did not know that to miss Sunday Mass without being sick or other excusing reason - is a mortal sin.”

Do you mean 7 deadly sins?


Note that often this is misunderstood what such mean. Note for readers that such are not a list of all the mortal sins (not saying you thought it was) or even that there cannot be also venial sins of some several of those such as gluttony.

The Church has moved away from calling them (that list) by that name but rather “capital sins”- for they are engender other sins and vices.

Compendium issued by Pope Benedict XVI

The seven capital sins:

  1. Pride
  2. Covetousness
  3. Lust
  4. Anger
  5. Gluttony
  6. Envy
  7. Sloth

Bookcat, do you have an online source or catechism that supports your contention? The Catholic Dictionary is a physical book, no? I don’t own it.

From the catechism:

[quote=]1857 For a sin to be mortal, three conditions must together be met: "Mortal sin is sin whose object is grave matter and which is also committed with full knowledge and deliberate consent."131

1858 Grave matter is specified by the Ten Commandments, corresponding to the answer of Jesus to the rich young man: "Do not kill, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and your mother."132 The gravity of sins is more or less great: murder is graver than theft. One must also take into account who is wronged: violence against parents is in itself graver than violence against a stranger.

1859 Mortal sin requires full knowledge and complete consent. It presupposes knowledge of the sinful character of the act, of its opposition to God’s law. It also implies a consent sufficiently deliberate to be a personal choice. Feigned ignorance and hardness of heart133 do not diminish, but rather increase, the voluntary character of a sin.

From the Baltimore Catechism:

[quote=]Q. 279. How many kinds of actual sin are there?

A. There are two kinds of actual sin – mortal and venial.

Q. 280. What is mortal sin?

A. Mortal sin is a grievous offense against the law of God.

Q. 281. Why is this sin called mortal?

A. This sin is called mortal because it deprives us of spiritual life, which is sanctifying grace, and brings everlasting death and damnation on the soul.

Q. 282. How many things are necessary to make a sin mortal?

A. To make a sin mortal, three things are necessary: 1.a grievous matter, sufficient reflection, and full consent of the will.

The catechism discusses grave matter but doesn’t use the term “mortal sin” in the way you seem to be using it, apart from the three conditions for mortal sin. If mortal sin requires the other two conditions, then it follows that a sin is not mortal (= necessarily damning us to hell, separating us completely from God’s grace) if the conditions are not met. There isn’t a third category (mortal sin that isn’t actually mortal for a person who commits it) People may use the term “mortal sin” to mean “grave matter” but that is not how the Church explains it.

Yes just google “Catholic Dictionary” “John Hardon” and “mortal sin” together and it will pop up. It is in a couple places online such as

The Catechisms there are discussing the* committing* of mortal sin.

I noted that above. Yes that is one sense. What a mortal sin is in terms of “When is a mortal sin committed?”

The Church and Catholic Moral Theology* also* uses it in objective sense when referring to the nature of the sin itself - murder is a grave sin or murder is a mortal sin or murder is a serious sin - all three meaning the same thing and referring to the sin itself - in itself.

One can say simply murder is a mortal sin - it should not be done! Or torture is mortal sin do not torture people!

Such is quite fine and true.

Now could one say “hey murder is a grave matter so if you do it with full knowledge and complete consent then you will commit a grave sin” ? Sure. Of course. That though is getting into both aspects - the thing itself and culpability.

PS: the local older Baltimore Catechism is using mortal sin in the objective sense in Q 280.

Some quick examples of the “objective use” of mortal sin - apart from the question of any particular person committing a mortal sin (the subjective sense) -but in terms of the sin in itself. Its nature.

Catholic Answers Staff Apologist:

And well the Pope:

"Torturing people is a mortal sin! A very grave sin! "

~ Pope Francis

Address to the Corallo Association March 22 2014

“And to Catholics, I say: to torture a person is a mortal sin; it is a grave sin, but even more, it is a sin against humanity.”

~ Pope Francis

Angelus June 22 2014

From the pope’s mouth to my ears. But I’m still struggling with this because it feels like a colloquial usage of the word “mortal sin” when the catechisms define it rather strictly as requiring three conditions. In other words, I don’t doubt that people use it the way you mean, I just think that it’s being used “off label” as it were.

In other words, if a sin can be mortal by it’s nature, then why doesn’t the catechism say so? The catechism defines grave matter/grievous matter but does not say “grave matter = mortal sin = serious sin” or anything like it. On the contrary, it says very specifically that a mortal sin = three conditions.

[quote=]Q. 283. What do we mean by “grievous matter” with regard to sin?

A. By “grievous matter” with regard to sin we mean that the thought, word or deed by which mortal sin is committed must be either very bad in itself or severely prohibited, and therefore sufficient to make a mortal sin if we deliberately yield to it.

*Context. *

The Catechism is discussing there in the section you refer to - the use of the terms regarding ones culpability for sin.

Here is the Compendium issued by Pope Benedict XVI:

First it discusses sin itself -what it is.

392. What is sin?


Sin is “a word, an act, or a desire contrary to the eternal Law” (Saint Augustine). It is an offense against God in disobedience to his love. It wounds human nature and injures human solidarity. Christ in his passion fully revealed the seriousness of sin and overcame it with his mercy.
393. Is there a variety of sins?

There are a great many kinds of sins. They can be distinguished according to their object or according to the virtues or commandments which they violate. They can directly concern God, neighbor, or ourselves. They can also be divided into sins of thought, of word, of deed, or of omission.
394. How are sins distinguished according to their gravity?**


A distinction is made between mortal and venial sin.

Then it discuss the “committing” of mortal sin and venial sin.

395. When does one commit a mortal sin?


One commits a mortal sin when there are simultaneously present: grave matter, full knowledge, and deliberate consent. This sin destroys charity in us, deprives us of sanctifying grace, and, if unrepented, leads us to the eternal death of hell. It can be forgiven in the ordinary way by means of the sacraments of Baptism and of Penance or Reconciliation.
396. When does one commit a venial sin?

One commits a venial sin, which is essentially different from a mortal sin, when the matter involved is less serious or, even if it is grave, when full knowledge or complete consent are absent. Venial sin does not break the covenant with God but it weakens charity and manifests a disordered affection for created goods. It impedes the progress of a soul in the exercise of the virtues and in the practice of moral good. It merits temporal punishment which purifies.

So in the context of discussing “did I commit a mortal sin” or “when is mortal sin committed” one would discuss those three aspects - and use the term you mentioned before “grave matter”. One commits a mortal sin when there is …grave matter, full knowledge and deliberate consent.

If one is discussing the question in the abstract - such as what are examples of mortal sins one would say:“murder, adultery, fornication, torture etc are examples of mortal sins” (or one could switch out the term mortal sin with grave sin or with serious sin - all three get used).

Bookcat, in your opinion, could one then say, “I committed a mortal sin without being guilty of mortal sin”?

Or alternatively, “I committed a mortal sin but it was only venial sin.”


Interjecting the word “committed” brings in idea of “grave culpability”.

If there is not serious guilt but rather venial or no sin - one has not “committed a mortal sin”.

When one gets into if one committed a mortal sin - that is why the term to use is “grave matter”.

One is then discussing culpability.

Not the seriously sinful sin in the abstract.

Remember the two different senses. The objective sense -the serious nature of the thing itself.

And the subjective sense - that of personal sin.

Hence the OP was looking for a list of mortal sins. Not asking about how does not commit such -when is one guilty of such.

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