Sunday Shopping?


Can I shop on Sunday with necessity?
God bless :slight_smile:


You can; it is not a sin. I try to avoid shopping on Sundays, as a matter of course, but when necessity arises, it is not sinful to do so.


If it’s necessity, yes.


I do my best to avoid it, and very rarely do shop on Sunday, unless it is online. I figure that doesn’t contribute to anyone not having time for God, family, and friends. I don’t think it is necessarily a sin, especially if a real necessity comes up.


I just assume that everyone working is Jewish and shop when I want.


Keep in mind that most people who are working on Sunday are doing so because they need the money (not all, but most).

So going shopping or out to eat on Sunday is allowing them to pay their bills.

As long as you are taking your Sunday Obligation seriously yourself, you may do what is needed.

With that said, don’t put un-needed shopping over spending time with your family and praying to God.


Even the Vatican employs people to work on Sunday. It takes a lot of security personnel to make a papal Mass go smoothly. :slight_smile:


:rotfl: Funny - I read the thread title ad thought this was a going to be about selecting the Mass time that fit a family’s other Sunday obligations and if that was okay or not … boy was I wrong … :blush:

I often wonder why people have a hard time getting to Mass - when there are so many options [small rural communities being the exception] in the urban settings … in the Portland Metro area there is everything from Saturday PM to Sunday evening at 9:00 PM …

But being so out there from the actual topic really made me laugh :smiley:


“Remember to keep holy the Sabbath Day” but also remember “That the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath”. It’s not contradictory and I think the Catechism of the Catholic Church clarifies it. If the things one does on Sunday glorify God, do them. Maybe stopping at the bakery to bring home something special after Mass, or a gift for your wife, and so on. Doing all the grocery shopping for the week? Don’t think so, unless it’s the only time available. At least, that’s my humble understanding.


Before Vatican II priests gave sermons against shopping on Sunday, and at that time quite a few stores were closed all day Sunday. It was taken seriously by protestants and catholics. No shopping.

I think this gave more time to the family life and they did things together. It was not only a day set aside for God, but also for the family. There would be gettogethers of the adults and then send the kids to the movies or parks. People walked around the block and stopped to talk to one another on their front porches. There were free ball parks to enjoy. Without air conditioning, families flocked to the pools and beaches. And then they were together for the evening meal. It was nice.

So no shopping was a good thing.


Sadly, Sunday shopping seems here to stay.

It is not hardest on the shoppers–they can dedicate other times on Sunday for their Sunday obligations (note the plural!):

Canon 1247
On Sundays and other holy days of obligation the faithful are bound to participate in the Mass; they are also to abstain from those labors and business concerns which impede the worship to be rendered to God, the joy which is proper to the Lord’s Day, or the proper relaxation of mind and body.

So the obligation is: to participate in Mass, to abstain from what impedes proper worship or joy in the Lord’s day, and what impedes proper leisure and refreshment of mind and body.

Sunday shopping is hardest, in my opinion, on those who must work to allow it–especially because such work is not for an hour or two, but extended over a whole shift, if not longer.

Similarly, I feel sorry for those who must work, say, on Thanksgiving Day simply to allow the stores to open that much earlier and make a few more bucks. It is unconscionable! I will continue to boycott any such store. And I avoid shopping on Sunday for similar reasons–but, as mentioned in the original post, it may be a necessity.


Where it is a true necessity, yes, but it’s sure easy to create “necessities” where they don’t exist, such as:

  1. Poor planning. I could have taken care of all the “necessary” shopping on Saturday, but didn’t think about the family dinner until the homily at Mass; or, It’s so much more convenient to stop at the store after Mass than to make a special trip now.

  2. Taking a job that requires work on Sunday. There, of course, are many jobs that can’t “take Sundays off” (hospitals #1), but commerce can, and so can restaurants. If I desire to take a job and make it clear up front I cannot work on Sundays and don’t get the job as a result, I look elsewhere (or, as when this happened to me last year, realized I really didn’t need a job outside the home).
    If a person believes it honors God to avoid work on Sunday, they will trust God to lead them to a job that so honors Him.

  3. Working to pay/shopping for “stuff” I don’t need. If we all lived simply with only what we need, how different in kind and number would be our shopping.

The point isn’t finding a Mass that “fits into our schedule” (OK, God, I think I can squeeze You in on Saturday night for the vigil Mass so I can go shopping on Sunday after we go out to eat) but ordering our Sundays to honor God in all and above all. Worship, rest, family–that’s what a priest said Sundays are for.

So I would change “necessity” to “emergency” re Sunday shopping (may be just semantics but the difference in words helps make the point). Since we stopped shopping on Sundays several years ago, we have not known one Sunday where a true emergency required shopping.



Our church offers a 5:00pm English and a 7:00pm Hispanic Vigil mass on Saturday evening, a “no music” mass Sunday morning at 7:30am, two traditional (choir and organ) masses at 9:00am and 11:00am, a 1:00pm Hispanic mass, a 3:00pm Polish mass and a 6:00pm Life Teen mass.

Not too many excuses to miss a weekend obligation around here. :thumbsup:


And, if those options are not enough–how far are you willing to drive to go shopping on Sunday? I’d think you should be willing to drive at least that far, and perhaps a minimum of 5 or 10 miles, to go to meet our Lord and take part in his heavenly nourishment! How many churches are available within that radius?


When I was over in Europe, which supposedly is less religious than the U.S., many stores were closed on Sunday, as a matter of custom.

I think supposedly religious U.S. actually worships the almighty dollar above all things.:rolleyes:


The writer Alexis de Tocqueville in his two volume survey of early America notes the keeping of the Sabbath; with no working. Sunday was a day of rest, without labor; but on Monday all was busy and industrious! See Appendix E on the web page link for the passage.



I think you are absolutely correct, I see this year, most retail stores will not even close for thanksgiving, this will not be a one year thing either, Id bet this will only get worse in the years to come, eventually I think all stores will be open on thanksgiving and Christmas.The stores are so greedy anymore, I almost cannot even believe it!

Many people try to justify it, but that is a feeble attempt at best.

IMO, its just another example of people living for the world and just accepting what is considered ‘commonplace’, even if it conflicts with their beliefs. Churches dont even discourage it either, so that speaks volumes in itself.


Yes, most churches say nothing about it. I believe the Mormons and Seventh Day Adventists are pretty serious about the Sabbath. But most other Christians go straight from church to Sunday Brunch at a restaurant, then a stop at the supermarket or mall.


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