I joined the Church this past Easter, and every weekend before Confession I have this struggle of wondering if I’ve committed a mortal sin for which I must go to Confession so I can receive the Eucharist.
I understand the three requirements for something to be a mortal sin:
It must be committed with the full knowledge of the sinner
It must be committed with the full consent of the sinner
It must be grave matter
The part I don’t understand is, **what constitutes grave matter? **
Some things are obvious. Murder. Fornication. Masturbation. Adultery. Stealing. Those I feel sure are all grave matter and if the other two requirements are met, would be mortal sin.
Other things, to me, are less obvious. Is getting angry and yelling at someone grave matter? Is taking the Lord’s name in vain grave matter? Is cussing grave matter? Is having an unkind thought grave matter? Is feeling resentful for an injustice grave matter? Is feeling angry when a roommate doesn’t do their share of chores grave matter?
I find myself going to confession every week because I’m unsure whether I’ve committed grave matter sins. My research hasn’t come up with a good definition, a way for me to know if something is grave matter or not. I think I tend towards scrupulosity- not terribly so, but enough so that I don’t want to just rely on my “feelings” about it and would prefer to have a more concrete way of determining it.