Archive for the ‘Confession’ Category

7 deadly sins; 7 lively virtues


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I think this quote from Pope Francis needs to be covered in stars and flowers and framed in everyone’s house!

To love

Don’t give hatred time. Give time to time. This is useful for us when we have wicked thoughts about others, wicked feeling, when we have hostility, hatred, to not allow it to grow, to stop it, to give time to time. Time puts things in harmony, and makes us see things in the right light. But if you react in a moment of anger, it is certain you will be unjust. You will be unjust. And you will hurt yourself, too. Here’s some advice: time, time in the moment of temptation. The one who pauses gives God time.
Casa Santa Marta
17 April 2015

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99 Questions to complete your examination of conscience …

Here are 99 questions to prayerfully consider before going to confession:

“I am the Lord, your God.  You shall have no other gods besides me.”

1. Have I doubted or denied God’s existence?
2. Have I been ungrateful to God for His benefits?
3. Am I open to God’s will?
4. Do I rely solely on myself and not on God?
5. Have I abandoned the Catholic Faith?
6. Have I joined a non-Catholic church or anti-Catholic group?
7. Have I refused to believe any truths of the Faith or any teachings of the Church?
8. Did I fail to profess or defend the Faith?
9. Have I failed to go to confession at least once a year?
10. Have I been faithful to my daily prayers?
11. Have I practiced any superstitions?
12. Am I unwilling to turn away from everything that makes my soul unworthy?

“You shall not take the name of the Lord, your God, in vain.”

13. Have I sworn by God’s name carelessly, in anger, or surprise?
14. Do I speak irreverently of holy persons, places or things?
15. Have I cursed myself of others?
16. Did I use profanity?
17. Have I called down evil upon anyone or anything?
18. Did I get angry with God?
19. Have I angered others so as to make them curse?
20. Have I broken a vow made to God?
21. Have I murmured or complained about God?

“Remember the Sabbath Day, to keep it holy.”

22. Did I miss Mass on a Sunday or a Holy Day of Obligation?
23. Did I arrive to Mass late or leave early?
24. Did I receive Holy Communion in a state of mortal sin?
25. Have I been irreverent during the Most Blessed Sacrament?
26. Have I been willfully distracted during Mass?
27. Do I allow myself to be distracted during Mass?
28. Have I done unnecessary work on Sunday?

“Honor your father and your mother.”

29. Have I disobeyed, insulted, or shown disrespect to my parents or legitimate superiors?
30. Did I neglect my duties to my husband, wife, children or parents?
31. Did I neglect to give good religious example to my family?
32. Am I disrespectful, impolite, or discourteous toward my family?
33. Have I failed to meet my children’s physical, spiritual, emotional, and educational needs?
34. Have I disobeyed the lawful demands of my superiors, teachers, or employer?
35. Did I fail to actively take an interest in the religious education and formation of my children?
36. Did I cause anyone to leave the faith?
37. Did I cause tension and fights in my family?
38. Did I care for my aged and infirm relatives?

“You shall not kill.”

39. Did I kill or physically injure anyone?
40. Did I have an abortion, or advise someone else to have an abortion?
41. Do I use artificial contraceptive or birth control prevention?
42. Have I entertained thoughts of suicide, desired to commit suicide or attempted suicide?
43. Have I been a part of euthanasia or assisted suicide?
44. Have I placed others in harms way, by driving or texting inappropriately?
45. Have I failed to help someone in danger or in need?
46. Did I drink or smoke excessively or abuse prescribed drugs?
47. Have I wished evil on anyone?
48. Do I deliberately harbor unkind and revengeful thoughts about others?
49. Have I taken revenge?
50. Have I used harsh or abusive language toward others?
51. Have I spread gloom through my words and actions?
52. Is there anyone with whom I refuse to speak, or against whom I bear a grudge?
53. Have I taken pleasure in anyone’s misfortunes?
54. Have I led others into sin?

“You shall not commit adultery” and “You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife”

55. Did I commit impure acts with another – fornication (premarital sex) or adultery (sex with a married person)?
56. Did I commit impure acts by myself (masturbation)?
57. Do I engage in homosexual acts?
58. Have I refused my spouse the marriage right without good reason?
59. Am I dating someone who is civilly divorced but still bound by a valid marriage?
60. Did I marry or advise anyone to marry outside the Catholic Church?
61. Have I willfully entertained impure thoughts or desires?
62. Did I respect all members of the opposite sex, or have I objectified them?
63. Have I read, listened to, viewed, or spoken impure things?
64. Have I worn tight or otherwise revealing and immodest clothing?
65. Have I avoided occasions of impurity?

“You shall not steal.”

66. Have I stolen money or property?
67. Have I cheated?
68. Have I failed to make restitution for what I stole?
69. Have I intentionally damaged property?
70. Have I accepted or bought stolen property?
71. Have I helped someone steal?
72. Am I dishonest in my business dealings?
73. Have I failed to make restitution for my stealing, cheating and frauds?
74. Do I gamble excessively?
75. Have I borrowed without permission?
76. Have I failed to return things borrowed?
77. Did I waste time at work, school or at home?
78. Have I cheated my employer of an honest day’s work?
79. Have I cheated my employees of their wages?
80. Have I refused or neglected to help anyone in urgent need?

“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.”

81. Have I lied deliberately?
82. Have I deliberately misled or deceived anyone?
83. Did I gossip or reveal others’ faults or sins?
84. Have I failed to keep promises or oaths?
85. Have I signed false documents?
86. Have I failed to prevent the defamation of another’s character?
87. Have I revealed secrets and betrayed trust?
88. Do I make false judgments and harbor false suspicions?
89. Have a failed to forgive someone or held a grudge?
90. Have I failed to apologize or make amends?
91. Did I fail to keep secret what should be confidential?
92. Have I disclosed another’s sins without serious reason?

“You shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor.”

93. Am I greedy or selfish?
94. Am I envious of someone’s possessions, talents, or blessings?
95. Do I indulge in self-pity?
96. Am I proud, vain, or desire to be praise?
97. Have I exaggerated my success?
98. Have I minimized or explained my failures?
99. Have I measured my charity by what others have given, rather than my ability to give?

Going to confession can be overwhelming and uncomfortable. This list of questions is extensive and can be daunting. It can be hard to say out loud the things in our lives that we have done wrong. Rather than looking down upon your failings, let the sorrow for sin help you overcome them. Look upon this sacrament as an opportunity to make full reparation for your sins, and restore your soul’s relationship with God. If you are reluctant to go to confession remember God’s mercy and compassion. “Though your sins be like scarlet, they shall become white as snow. Though they be red like crimson, they shall become white as wool.” (Isiah 1:18)

Remember, Christ came into the world to save sinners.



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The Sacrament of Penance is a miracle of grace, no less for priest than for penitent. Nowhere and in no function, it seems to me, does the priest represent our Lord in His Divine character so literally as in this Holy Sacrament. It is indeed a wonder how two souls, entire strangers to each other, can at once be knit into holy bonds of friendship, so close, so sincere, so sacred.

– Servant of God Isaac Hecker (1819-1888), founder of the Paulist

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By Fr Mike Schmitz

I was once riding in a shuttle-bus with a number of older folks on the way from an airport. They noticed that I was a priest and started asking questions about it.

“Do you do all of the priest stuff?”


“Even the Confession thing?”

“Yeah. All the time.”

One older lady gasped, “Well, I think that that would be the worst. It would be so depressing; hearing all about people’s sins.”

I told them that it was the exact opposite. There is almost no greater place to be than with someone when they are coming back to God. I said, “It would depressing if I had to watch someone leave God; I get to be with them when they come back to Him.” The Confessional is a place where people let God’s love win. The Confessional is the most joyful, humbling, and inspiring place in the world.
I think there are three things. First, I see the costly mercy of God in action. I get to regularly come face to face with the overwhelming, life-transforming power of God’s love. I get to see God’s love up-close and it reminds me of how good God is.

Not many folks get to see the way in which God’s sacrifice on the Cross is constantly breaking into people’s lives and melting the hardest hearts. Jesus consoles those who are grieving their sins . . . and strengthens those who find themselves wanting to give up on God or on life.

As a priest, I get to see this thing happen every day.”


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Examination of Conscience

An examination of conscience is made at the end of the day, before retiring to bed at night, going over in your mind the events of the day, whether you did something with Christian charity towards your neighbour or whether you omitted to do something charitable.

Before going to Confession, spend a few minutes thinking back on your life – whether it has been over the past few days, weeks, months. Make a review of mortal and venial sins since your last sacramental confession, and express sorrow for sins, hatred for sins and a firm resolution not to sin again.

A helpful pattern for examination of conscience is to review the Commandments of God and the Precepts of the Church:

  1. Have God and the pursuit of sanctity in Christ been the goal of my life? Have I denied my faith? Have I placed my trust in false teachings or substitutes for God? Did I despair of God’s mercy?
  2. Have I avoided the profane use of God’s name in my speech? Have I broken a solemn vow or promise?
  3. Have I honored every Sunday by avoiding unnecessary work, celebrating the Mass (also holydays)? Was I inattentive at, or unnecessarily late for Mass, or did I leave early? Have I neglected prayer for a long time?
  4. Have I shown Christlike respect to parents, spouse, and family members, legitimate authorities? Have I been attentive to the religious education and formation of my children?
  5. Have I cared for the bodily health and safety of myself and all others? Did I abuse drugs or alcohol? Have I supported in any way abortion, “mercy killing,” or suicide?
  6. Was I impatient, angry, envious, proud, jealous, revengeful, lazy? Have I forgiven others?
  7. Have I been just in my responsibilities to employer and employees? Have I discriminated against others because of race or other reasons?
  8. Have I been chaste in thought and word? Have I used sex only within marriage and while open to procreating life? Have I given myself sexual gratification? Did I deliberately look at impure TV, pictures, reading?
  9. Have I stolen anything from another, from my employer, from government? If so, am I ready to repay it? Did I fulfill my contracts? Did I rashly gamble, depriving my family of necessities?
  10. Have I spoken ill of any other person? Have I always told the truth? Have I kept secrets and confidences?
  11. Have I permitted sexual thoughts about someone to whom I am not married?
  12. Have I desired what belongs to other people? Have I wished ill on another?
  13. Have I been faithful to sacramental living (Holy Communion and Penance)?
  14. Have I helped make my parish community stronger and holier? Have I contributed to the support of the Church?
  15. Have I done penance by abstaining and fasting on obligatory days? Have I fasted before receiving communion?
  16. Have I been mindful of the poor? Do I accept God’s will for me?

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