What should I do when a Private Revelation (church approved) and the CCC are in conflict?

(scruples please don’t read this)

So one thing that bothers me is when I read a church approved PR…and then read the CCC or a speech from the pope, etc…and they say 2 different things.

for example…

here is a quote from Jesus in a private revelation of St. Bridget of Sweden.

"But if you take pleasure in committing even a slight sin, which you know to be a sin, and you do so trusting to your own abstinence and presuming on grace, without doing penance and reparation for it, know that it can become a mortal sin

here is another quote from the PR…

“…And quite rightly, too, because inasmuch as he had the constent intention of sinning, even if he did not put it into practice, he deserves to be handed over to the devil for eternity. The smallest sin is enough to damn anyone delighting in it who does not repent.”**

…and another…from the Virgin Mary speaking to St. Bridget

""They do not consider that the least little sin a person delights in is enough to send him or her to eternal punishment. Since God does not let the least little sin go unpunished nor the least good go unrewarded, they will always have a punishment inasmuch as they have a constant intention of sinning, and my Son, who sees their heart, counts that as an act."

…and then here is the CCC

**1863…Deliberate and unrepented venial sin *disposes us little by little *to commit mortal sin. However venial sin does not break the covenant with God. **

1862 One commits venial sin when, in a less serious matter, he does not observe the standard prescribed by the moral law, or when he disobeys the moral law in a grave matter, but without full knowledge or without complete consent.

.I’m confused.

What statement should I believe?

the PR or the CCC?

I read this St. Bridget PR in 2010 and has haunted me ever since. I’m so paranoid about “is this a sin, is that a sin” because I’ve become to believe that even the smallest sins will become mortal!:eek: I would say this PR and the Sermon by St. Leonard of Port Maurice single-handedly made me scrupulous like I am today.:frowning: If there were 2 things I wish never happened in my life, it would be reading these 2 writings. My life would have been so much better.

Hopefully no scrupulous people read this and I hope no one else becomes scrupulous after reading this:(

These two statements are not in conflict nor do they contradict each other.

All of your spiritual reading should be under the guidance of your spiritual director given your scrupulosity issues.

but one says it is automatically mortal sin while the other says it will eventually lead to mortal sin if it keeps happening.

Every time I confess a deliberate venial sin in cofession as a mortal sin. The priest always tells me it’s not grave matter. So I always feel confused because everyone I confess to tells me not to think every deliberate venial sin I commit is a mortal sin, etc.

Of course the official teaching of the Church regarding the matter trumps all else. Including: private revelation or an opinion of any great theologian. Now, the Church has always taught that venial sin cannot send one to hell, therefore, this trumps all else. Just because a private revelation is approved, does not mean every sentence is infallible. I think we have to interpret private revelation in LIGHT OF the faith we know to be true. If we do this and still find a contradiction, then the Church IMO will not approve.

In this situation, I would offer this interpretation:
(just a possibility)
Jesus is not saying venial sin damns. I think he is saying that a certain act which by its nature is not grave can damn because of a person’s disposition. The disposition He seems to indicate in these quotes is one of complete unrepentant, deliberate, obstinance. In other words, it seems almost as though the mortal sin being commited is not the “slight sin” but rather the presumption which has become grave not because of the matter one is presuming on but because of the individual’s complete attitude towards sin and God.
Alternatively, Jesus may be telling St. Bridget that even though these are slight sins, they do essentially damn. Not in themselves but because one with such an obstinate state of mind will so easily fall into mortal sin. I think this is true if we look at human experience…If I have an attitude that I do not care about God and am willing to commit any venial sin and have an attitude that I will not repent, do I really love God? Maybe in some slight form which I will narrowly escape hell…but then again, how long can I last in this state? Certainly this state will deprive me of many graces. When the occassions of sin come (whatever sins, whether they be against charity, justice, temperance, faith, hope, purity, generosity, fortitude, etc.) the grace I need will not be there…

But whatever the proper interpretation is, we HAVE TO trust the Church over any private revelation.

Take it easy. You have to learn not to interpret things so narrowly, like a fundamentalist would with the Bible. It’s a tendency we all have when dealing with religious words, because we tend to accept them as instruction and try to hew as closely to that instruction as possible. But once you interpret these things a little more loosely they become clearer.

Although I will acknowledge that upon a quick reading of those quotes my heart rate went up! I tend to mesh very poorly with a more legal approach to things and get upset by them.

Private revelations are addressed to the recipients of them only. Jesus was speaking to St. Bridget in terms that would cause her (and only her) to grow in holiness. Unless the locutions include specific instructions to tell specific things to specific people they have no impact on the spiritual walk of anyone else.

Even if the visionary is instructed to tell another person something, he is not obligated to respond to the seer’s word alone. The only obligation would be on the visionary to speak. The third person would then only need to try to understand the message in the light of Catholic teaching and under the direction of his own priest so that he can respond as is truly appropriate.

You say “everyone I go to”, which indicates that you are hopping from one priest to another. Make an effort to go to the same priest over a period of time and tell him that you have this pattern of sin. Consistency in direction from a single priest will be of more value than going from one priest to another. Ask the priest if you may follow up with his advice or direction in a week or two, in enough time to put his direction into practice, but not so long a period that the priest will have forgotten. You may have to work at this to go to confession on a particular priest’s schedule. If you are being scrupulous, you will begin to recognize it, and you can with help, move on. God bless.

Love God. Trust Him. Do your best and relax. God is not out to trap you into making venial sins grave. He loves you.

In real or apparent contradictions with approved or not- yet approved or even “supposedly approved” private revelations (just cause someone is a Canonized Saint is not an approval of their “private revelations” or what some may have said was such)

It is the Teaching of the Church that one looks to.

Follow the Teachings in the Catechism

I think it is like this:

Go to confession and confess every sin you can remember, and end it with the standard, “For these and all my sins including those I am unable to remmber, I am truly sorry.”

Then follow the priest’s instructions - he will absolve you by the power given him, and he will ask you to recite the Act of Contrition, and give you a penance.

After you have done this, of course, especially for habitual sins, you will often be tempted to do those sins again. Try your best to not give in to the temptations, and if you fall again, go to confession again (should go once a month anyway).
The most important thing is this: After confessing and being absolved, TRUST in the Mercy of Jesus. Trust Him fully that your sins are completely forgiven - they are completely forgiven because you went to Him, to the fountain of His Mercy poured out in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Lacking in this Trust is very offensive to Jesus, according to what He told St. Faustina. Do not fear Him, do not fear God. One needs to have complete trust in Him who died so you can live. Jesus loves you - remember that. Do not doubt His Mercy. Do not second guess. Do not leave the confessional worrying. Trust, and trust completely, and then you will feel your burden lifted, which is what He wants you to feel. And with this complete trust, you will find your love for Jesus grows more and more. And as your love for Jesus grows due to this Trust, you will very likely over the course of time find your desire to sin to lessen.

“Jesus I trust in you.” **

God bless you.

In apparent contradictions with approved or not- yet approved or even “supposedly approved” private revelations (just cause someone is a Canonized Saint is not an approval of their “private revelations” or what some may have said was such) (or real contradictions)

It is the Teaching of the Church that one looks to.

Follow the Teachings in the Catechism

[sign]Question answered (I think)![/sign]

Seriously, take those words at heart.

I just want to add one small clarification.

"But if you take pleasure in committing even a slight sin, which you know to be a sin, and you do so** trusting to your own abstinence** and presuming on grace, without doing penance and reparation for it, know that it can become a mortal sin…]he had the constant intention of sinning…]… anyone **delighting **in it who does not repent. …]

This is not directly addressing the venial sin. It addresses the state of the soul. If to the venial sin (which is not mortal) we add pride, presumption, and do not perform the acts that distinguish a penitent from an unrepentant sinner (namely, penance and reparation vs. impenitence and indulging in sin) then to the venial sin we add a sin of pride, a sin of presumption, and on top of it we don’t live with a penitent heart.

When you see the whole picture, it becomes clear that the “deliberate and unrepented” venial sin, which did not break the covenant with God, nevertheless disposed us to commit graver sins…which is what the Catechism briefly wraps up!

RC nailed it…in the above post…:thumbsup:

Also, I don’t see the words “automatically” used in the PRs you mentioned. In fact, the first one says “can become”, which may been now, may mean much later, may mean never. Nor does the phrase “little by little” mean that it has to happen over a long period of time. Things can happen little by little in a quite short amount of time. As RC mentioned about adding pride and everything else onto the venial sin. It can happen little by little, but in a very short period of time, or a long period of time.

Note that “pride” in the case of Christians seeking to live as such – is often “venial”

Note also that it is the presumption that makes the venial sin mortal.

It’s like saying to oneself, I am going to deliberately swear and cuss because I know I can go to confession about it afterwards and be absolved. To do that presumes upon the forgiveness of God, and thereby one deliberately takes advantage of that forgiveness in advance of the act. It’s the taking advantage that’s the mortal bit since you are effectively using God, not the venial sin itself.

That’s what the private revelation is saying - and it’s no different from that which you would find in the catechism, so there is no dichotomy between the private revelation and the public teaching of the Church.

Such “presumption” does not make a venial sin into mortal sin.

I would not give into much what this private revelation says since what they have written may not be exaltly what was said to them. The Church is the guardian of any revelation so listen to her! If you want a more detailed exposition about sin then read the Diary written by St. Maria Faustina which describes differently what this other saint has written. Who knows what exaltly these people actually have heard anyway. Can you remember in detail what someone has said to you. I see in these words contained in private revelation to St. Bridget not entirering accurate to what the Church teaches or even what St. Maria has written. I would not give too much weight to these revelations to St. Bridget. For one thing I cannot agree to the judgement placed on sin in those words. Venial sin is venial sin and cannot become mortal sin. It is like diabetes. You have type 2 diabetes so you can never get diabetes type 1. A venial sin cannot be mortal or become mortal. That is impossible! But those who commit venial sins can be led to commit a mortal sin later on but persisting into more grevious venial sins. By not dealng with your venial state might just point you to commit a mortal sin. A mortal sin must be mortal if it is to be mortal. No action of the venial state can ever become mortal. The mortal sin still needs to be committed.

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