So I just need a quick answer here, I am 15 years old and I’ve been struggling with pornography for 8-ish years (not 100% sure but I think it’s been eight) and masturbation for about four or five. It’s making it very difficult for me to have a good relationship with God. I attend confession frequently, pray the rosary (or at least a decade or two) every day, and pray for purity every day. My question has to do with weather or not I am in a state of mortal sin right now, and weather or not I can receive communion on Sunday. Since my last confession I have committed the sin once and it was late at night when I was very tired. I have since made an act of contrition and have been trying to do little penances (giving up parts of meals and other luxuries,and I am planning on fasting tomorrow). I have been praying for the opportunity to go to confession before Sunday, but if I don’t get the chance, can I still receive communion? I’m just not sure since it might be an addiction and since I was tired (might not have had 100% consent or been in full knowledge) if I’m in a state of mortal sin.
It is not about “100%” consent.
But complete consent.
We cannot tell you if you committed a mortal sin.
But if one has committed a mortal sin - one is not goto Holy Communion normally until one has been to confession.
Saturday has confessions scheduled.
Compendium issued by Pope Benedict XVI
305. When is a person obliged to confess mortal sins?**
Each of the faithful who has reached the age of discretion is bound to confess his or her mortal sins at least once a year and** always before receiving Holy Communion.**
291. What is required to receive Holy Communion?**
To receive Holy Communion one must be fully incorporated into the Catholic Church and be in the state of grace, that is, not conscious of being in mortal sin. Anyone who is conscious of having committed a grave sin must first receive the sacrament of Reconciliation before going to Communion. Also important for those receiving Holy Communion are a spirit of recollection and prayer, observance of the fast prescribed by the Church, and an appropriate disposition of the body (gestures and dress) as a sign of respect for Christ.
**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.
You can ask yourself - did you commit a mortal sin then or not? What do you judge in your conscience?
Of course confession is still important even if you judge it was not mortal -for more grace in overcoming the temptations and advice of the Priest etc.
Also if one does judge that one has committed a mortal sin - but cannot get to confession on Saturday - one could see the Priest after Mass for confession…and then after confession is done - ask him if he can give you Holy Communion.
On a further note to Bookcat, a priest, not internet posters, is who you should talk to about your habit. They may be able to give you personalized guidance and are trained to determine severity.
And know too that Jesus loves you and sees your response to grace…
Let us remember Jesus of Nazareth is The Lamb and the Good Shepherd …
“Jesus is called the Lamb: He is the Lamb who takes away the sin of the world. Someone might think: but how can a lamb, which is so weak, a weak little lamb, how can it take away so many sins, so much wickedness? With Love. With his meekness. Jesus never ceased being a lamb: meek, good, full of love, close to the little ones, close to the poor. He was there, among the people, healing everyone, teaching, praying. Jesus, so weak, like a lamb. However, he had the strength to take all our sins upon himself, all of them.
“But, Father, you don’t know my life: I have a sin that…, I can’t even carry it with a truck…”.
Many times, when we examine our conscience, we find some there that are truly bad! But he carries them. He came for this: to forgive, to make peace in the world, but first in the heart. Perhaps each one of us feels troubled in his heart, perhaps he experiences darkness in his heart, perhaps he feels a little sad over a fault… He has come to take away all of this, He gives us peace, he forgives everything. “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away sin”: he takes away sin, it’s root and all! This is salvation Jesus brings about by his love and his meekness. And in listening to what John the Baptist says, who bears witness to Jesus as the Saviour, our confidence in Jesus should grow. Many times we trust a doctor: it is good, because the doctor is there to cure us; we trust in a person: brothers and sisters can help us. It is good to have this human trust among ourselves. But we forget about trust in the Lord: this is the key to success in life. Trust in the Lord, let us trust in the Lord! “Lord, look at my life: I’m in the dark, I have this struggle, I have this sin…”; everything we have: “Look at this: I trust in you!”. And this is a risk we must take: to trust in Him, and He never disappoints.”
"Jesus is the “Good Shepherd” who goes in search of lost sheep, who knows his sheep and lays down his life for them (cf. Mt 18:12-14; Lk 15:4-7; Jn 10:2-4, 11-18). He is the way, the right path that leads us to life (cf. Jn 14:6), the light that illuminates the dark valley and overcomes all our fears (cf. Jn 1:9; 8:12; 9:5; 12:46).
He is the generous host who welcomes us and rescues us from our enemies, preparing for us the table of his body and his blood (cf. Mt 26:26-29; Mk 14:22-25); Lk 22:19-20) and the definitive table of the messianic banquet in Heaven (cf. Lk 14:15ff; Rev 3:20; 19:9). He is the Royal Shepherd, king in docility and in forgiveness, enthroned on the glorious wood of the cross (cf. Jn 3:13-15; 12:32; 17:4-5)."
~Pope Benedict XVI
"I invite all Christians, everywhere, at this very moment, to a renewed personal encounter with Jesus Christ, or at least an openness to letting him encounter them; I ask all of you to do this unfailingly each day. No one should think that this invitation is not meant for him or her, since “no one is excluded from the joy brought by the Lord”. The Lord does not disappoint those who take this risk; whenever we take a step towards Jesus, we come to realize that he is already there, waiting for us with open arms.
Now is the time to say to Jesus: “Lord, I have let myself be deceived; in a thousand ways I have shunned your love, yet here I am once more, to renew my covenant with you. I need you. Save me once again, Lord, take me once more into your redeeming embrace”. How good it feels to come back to him whenever we are lost!
Let me say this once more: God never tires of forgiving us; we are the ones who tire of seeking his mercy.
Christ, who told us to forgive one another “seventy times seven” (Mt 18:22) has given us his example: he has forgiven us seventy times seven. Time and time again he bears us on his shoulders.
No one can strip us of the dignity bestowed upon us by this boundless and unfailing love. With a tenderness which never disappoints, but is always capable of restoring our joy, he makes it possible for us to lift up our heads and to start anew. Let us not flee from the resurrection of Jesus, let us never give up, come what will. May nothing inspire more than his life, which impels us onwards!"
~ Pope Francis
Be patient. Go to the sacrament of reconciliation. Go to communion.
Most importantly, while you are coming to terms with your sexuality over the next years, get involved in ministry with others.
You may have to abstain from the Eucharist at times, do not abstain from the call to serve. It will help heal you.
Unfortunately there is not a “quick answer” as you hope for. We can explain principles, but beyond that it is not a good idea to seek direction on this point in an internet forum. Go see someone you can trust “IRL” about this, as scary as it might be… Know that Father is not going to be embarrassed or shocked that you ask about these things, as they are probably the most frequently discussed issues for persons in your position.
What is your conscience telling you? I think you already know the answer.
When in doubt…go to Confession or if not possible …abstain from Holy Communion.
Thank you so much for all your replies! Thank you for all the wonderful advice and references. I want to receive Jesus, but I also would never want to desecrate the Him. I guess I will just pray about it and trust that God’s will be done.
Is the main reason you are hoping it is all right to receive is that you do not want to be seen by others to not receive? If so, think about whom it is more important to please: God or the people around you?
When you have the chance to confess, tell your priest you are having trouble with this type of sin and ask for his advice. You can also run a search and find threads here about dealing with this problem, which is (unfortunately) all too common.
Some ideas for ya.
- Call a Priest and go to confession today.
- There is Saturday Confession usually in all the Churches even at different times.
- Ask a Priest before Mass for a quick confession.
- Ask a Priest after Mass for confession. After confession as for Holy Communion.