The Sin of Another, Is It Your Sin Too?


#1

I am looking for New Testament passages that speak to not enabling others to live in their sin and/or aiding others in their sin by not stepping forward as fellow Catholics to show them their sin. By knowingly letting another live in sin and/or enabling them to live in their sin, doesn’t this also become the sin of the one not taking action? Thank you for any thoughts.


#2

[quote=denmacii]I am looking for New Testament passages that speak to not enabling others to live in their sin and/or aiding others in their sin by not stepping forward as fellow Catholics to show them their sin. By knowingly letting another live in sin and/or enabling them to live in their sin, doesn’t this also become the sin of the one not taking action? Thank you for any thoughts.
[/quote]

You would have to be careful how you approach this.
I guess you mean mortal sin but how would you know someone else is in sin? Whatever you think they have done might not have fulfilled the three criteria required for a mortal sin to have taken place.
Even if you did (and I’m not convinced that any of us do know that for sure) how would you know they are aware that they are in sin. They may not be Catholic or even a non-Catholic Christian.
I think talking to a person about it would have to be done politely and in private because if you talk to someone about a mortal sin in public so that others become aware I think that in turn you would be committing the mortal sin of detraction.
I don’t believe its as straightforward as you might think otherwise why, for example, wouldn’t priests go to strip bars every day to tell all the girls they are sinning??
That’s my opinion but other more learned posters can give you a better answer.


#3

Old Testament reference:

Eczekial 3:18-19 If I say to the wicked, you shall surely die, and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, in order to save his life, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will required at your hand. But if you warn the wicked and he does not turn from his wickedness or from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you will have saved your life.

New Testament reference:

James 5:19-20: My brothers, if anyone among you should stray from the truth and someone bring him back, he should know that whoever brings back a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.

Keep in mind that tact is important, but we are obligated to admonish the sinner.


#4

In fact, tact is not enough. We must do it with desire for their eternal consolation. We might be tempted to approach them with a desire for retribution, like Jonah did, but that is not the heart of God.

I am reminded of this passage from a Doctor of the Church:

Therefore guilt is more gravely punished after the Redemption of the Blood than before, because man received more; but sinners neither seem to perceive this, nor to pay any attention to their own sins, and so become My enemies, though I have reconciled them, by means of the Blood of My Son.

But there is a remedy with which I appease My wrath – that is to say, by means of My servants, if they are jealous to constrain Me by their desire. You see, therefore, that you have bound Me with this bond which I have given you, because I wished to do mercy to the world.

Therefore I give My servants hunger and desire for My honor, and the salvation of souls, so that, constrained by their tears, I may mitigate the fury of My divine justice. Take, therefore, your tears and your sweat, drawn from the fountain of My divine love, and, with them, wash the face of My spouse.

I promise you, that, by this means, her beauty will be restored to her, not by the knife nor by cruelty, but peacefully, by humble and continued prayer, by the sweat and the tears shed by the fiery desire of My servants, and thus will I fulfill your desire if you, on your part, endure much, casting the light of your patience into the darkness of perverse man, not fearing the world’s persecutions, for I will protect you, and My Providence shall never fail you in the slightest need."

And now I wish to tell you that which I, the Truth, promised you, that is, to show you the perfect, the imperfect, and the supremely perfect; and the wicked, who, through their iniquities, drown in the river, attaining to punishment and torment; wherefore I say to you, My dearest sons, walk over the Bridge, and not underneath it, because underneath is not the way of truth, but the way of falsehood, by which walk the wicked, of whom I will presently speak to you. These are those sinners for whom I beg you to pray to Me, and for whom I ask in addition your tears and sweat, in order that they may receive mercy from Me.

The Dialogue of St. Catherine of Siena (p. 33,40)

hurst


#5

[quote=thistle]You would have to be careful how you approach this.
I guess you mean mortal sin but how would you know someone else is in sin? Whatever you think they have done might not have fulfilled the three criteria required for a mortal sin to have taken place.
Even if you did (and I’m not convinced that any of us do know that for sure) how would you know they are aware that they are in sin. They may not be Catholic or even a non-Catholic Christian.
I think talking to a person about it would have to be done politely and in private because if you talk to someone about a mortal sin in public so that others become aware I think that in turn you would be committing the mortal sin of detraction.
I don’t believe its as straightforward as you might think otherwise why, for example, wouldn’t priests go to strip bars every day to tell all the girls they are sinning??
That’s my opinion but other more learned posters can give you a better answer.
[/quote]

It is known as “participation” in the sin of another and the sinfulness will vary depending on the seriousness and degree.


#6

Thank you for your insights. I am a member of the Pastoral Council of a small Parish. My concern here regards a person who demands a fee for his performing the music at Mass. All other members of the choir volunteer. Knowing that he is the only one paid for his participation he makes it very clear that the Parish is lucky to have him, and that he is worth much more than the small amount that we pay him. My concern is that we are condoning his self-pride and that we need to gently guide him to perform without a fee, or discontinue his service. Any other thougts would be greatly appreciated. God Bless


#7

[quote=denmacii]Thank you for your insights. I am a member of the Pastoral Council of a small Parish. My concern here regards a person who demands a fee for his performing the music at Mass. All other members of the choir volunteer. Knowing that he is the only one paid for his participation he makes it very clear that the Parish is lucky to have him, and that he is worth much more than the small amount that we pay him. My concern is that we are condoning his self-pride and that we need to gently guide him to perform without a fee, or discontinue his service. Any other thougts would be greatly appreciated. God Bless
[/quote]

Sure and where does it say that singular service to the Church should be free. Perhaps the person needs the compensation. If he is a professional musician why should he not be paid? I know of several parishes who do not have volunteer musicians that pay a non-Catholic to play the organ. We pay other types of lay ministers in the Church and we also pay teachers in our Catholic Schools. Where is the sin? Why would one assume that it is self pride to ask for compensation? If you don’t want to pay him you always have the choice of doing without his services which evidently your Parish is reluctant to do. By the way I can’t read a note or play even a mouth organ so I do not speak from professional pride. While it is nice when skilled people, craftsmen included, donate time or materials for Church projects, I have always felt that no one should expect it of them.


#8

Perhaps he really needs the money?


#9

[quote=denmacii]Thank you for your insights. I am a member of the Pastoral Council of a small Parish. My concern here regards a person who demands a fee for his performing the music at Mass. All other members of the choir volunteer. Knowing that he is the only one paid for his participation he makes it very clear that the Parish is lucky to have him, and that he is worth much more than the small amount that we pay him. My concern is that we are condoning his self-pride and that we need to gently guide him to perform without a fee, or discontinue his service. Any other thougts would be greatly appreciated. God Bless
[/quote]

I’m not entirely sure this is a sin on his part. Of course, it can always be handled with,“Sorry, we can’t pay you.” “Then I don’t perform.” “Okey-dokey!”


#10

If there was any doubt in my mind, or of others in the Parish, that the compensation was needed for this person to make ends meet then I would not be asking the question. The problem, I believe, is that this person is very quick to insist that they are worth more than they are receiving for their participation in giving glory to God, while the entire balance of the Parish, including all other Choir members, are participating out of love for our Lord, to give glory to our Lord. – it absolutely feels from my heart that by providing compensation to this person the Parish is aiding this person with a sin of self-pride. My belief is that our Parish needs to discontinue the compensation with the hope that this person would continue on in their participation with our Choir. Believe me, this is very troubling for me to feel this way, because I make every effort not to judge others. But, in this situation I am at odds with keeping silent because I firmly believe that the Parish is aiding this person with their sin by paying them the fee they insist upon. I do appreciate all of your comments.


#11

[quote=denmacii]If there was any doubt in my mind, or of others in the Parish, that the compensation was needed for this person to make ends meet then I would not be asking the question. The problem, I believe, is that this person is very quick to insist that they are worth more than they are receiving for their participation in giving glory to God, while the entire balance of the Parish, including all other Choir members, are participating out of love for our Lord, to give glory to our Lord. – it absolutely feels from my heart that by providing compensation to this person the Parish is aiding this person with a sin of self-pride. My belief is that our Parish needs to discontinue the compensation with the hope that this person would continue on in their participation with our Choir. Believe me, this is very troubling for me to feel this way, because I make every effort not to judge others. But, in this situation I am at odds with keeping silent because I firmly believe that the Parish is aiding this person with their sin by paying them the fee they insist upon. I do appreciate all of your comments.
[/quote]

Is this person a choir member or an accompaniest, ie, organ/piano/God forbid, drums?


#12

This person sings, and plays the piano/organ. And, he does do a very good job with both - as do the other members who are not collecting any compensation.


#13

[quote=denmacii]This person sings, and plays the piano/organ. And, he does do a very good job with both - as do the other members who are not collecting any compensation.
[/quote]

Well, I’m not sure. Accompaniests (sp) are usually paid, in my experience. We pay our cantors in our parish, but not the choir. I dunno.


#14

[quote=denmacii]If there was any doubt in my mind, or of others in the Parish, that the compensation was needed for this person to make ends meet then I would not be asking the question. The problem, I believe, is that this person is very quick to insist that they are worth more than they are receiving for their participation in giving glory to God, while the entire balance of the Parish, including all other Choir members, are participating out of love for our Lord, to give glory to our Lord. – it absolutely feels from my heart that by providing compensation to this person the Parish is aiding this person with a sin of self-pride. My belief is that our Parish needs to discontinue the compensation with the hope that this person would continue on in their participation with our Choir. Believe me, this is very troubling for me to feel this way, because I make every effort not to judge others. But, in this situation I am at odds with keeping silent because I firmly believe that the Parish is aiding this person with their sin by paying them the fee they insist upon. I do appreciate all of your comments.
[/quote]

Before I rambled on in my earlier post I did not know what “sin” had been committed.
Frankly I do not believe you can say with certainty this person is committing a sin nor can you say the Parish is participating in a “sin”.
Am I correct in thinking that the Parish Council makes decisions about paying compensation and that in this case it was agreed to pay this person?
If that is the situation then I don’t understand what the problem is. Are you saying that either everyone should be paid or nobody should be paid? What if everyone asked for a fee, would you consider all of them to be sinning?


#15

[quote=denmacii]This person sings, and plays the piano/organ. And, he does do a very good job with both - as do the other members who are not collecting any compensation.
[/quote]

Hi!
Is this person someone you hired for the job? or did someone else hire him/her?
If you hired this individual and made these arrangements??? :confused:
Its very hard to say, This person may be taking the money they are paid for their services and donating it down the road to the homeless shelter or crisis Pregnancy center.
From what you’ve said I dont think anyone can conclude that their is any sin being comitted here.
If your really concerned then I would speak privately to your parish priest. :thumbsup:

MM


#16

Someone once told Jesus, “tell my brother to give me my share
of our father’s inheritence.” Jesus said “who made me your
judge? Guard against greed.”

I believe He would say the same thing to you now if you said,
“Tell my brother to work without compensation and not be
prideful”. He would say, “Guard against your own pride”.


#17

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