Baltimore Catechism No. 3 (of 4) eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 256 pages of information about Baltimore Catechism No. 3 (of 4).

Q. 774.  How many kinds of occasions of sin are there?  A. There are four kinds of occasions of sin:  (1) Near occasions, through which we always fall; (2) remote occasions, through which we sometimes fall; (3) voluntary occasions or those we can avoid; and (4) involuntary occasions or those we cannot avoid.  A person who lives in a near and voluntary occasion of sin need not expect forgiveness while he continues in that state.

Q. 775.  What persons, places and things are usually occasions of sin?  A. (1) The persons who are occasions of sin are all those in whose company we sin, whether they be bad of themselves or bad only while in our company, in which case we also become occasions of sin for them; (2) the places are usually liquor saloons, low theaters, indecent dances, entertainments, amusements, exhibitions, and all immoral resorts of any kind, whether we sin in them or not; (3) the things are all bad books, indecent pictures, songs, jokes and the like, even when they are tolerated by public opinion and found in public places.


Q. 776. {208} What is Confession?  A. Confession is the telling of our sins to a duly authorized priest, for the purpose of obtaining forgiveness.

Q. 777.  Who is a duly authorized priest?  A. A duly authorized priest is one sent to hear confessions by the lawful bishop of the diocese in which we are at the time of our confession.

Q. 778.  Is it ever allowed to write our sins and read them to the priest in the confessional or give them to him to read?  A. It is allowed, when necessary, to write our sins and read them to the priest, as persons do who have almost entirely lost their memory.  It is also allowed to give the paper to the priest, as persons do who have lost the use of their speech.  In such cases the paper must, after the confession, be carefully destroyed either by the priest or the penitent.

Q. 779.  What is to be done when persons must make their confession and cannot find a priest who understands their language?  A. Persons who must make their confession and who cannot find a priest who understands their language, must confess as best they can by some signs, showing what sins they wish to confess and how they are sorry for them.

Q. 780. {209} What sins are we bound to confess?  A. We are bound to confess all our mortal sins, but it is well also to confess our venial sins.

Q. 781.  Why is it well to confess also the venial sins we remember?  A. It is well to confess also the venial sins we remember (1) because it shows our hatred of all sin, and (2) because it is sometimes difficult to determine just when a sin is venial and when mortal.

Q. 782.  What should one do who has only venial sins to confess?  A. One who has only venial sins to confess should tell also some sin already confessed in his past life for which he knows he is truly sorry; because it is not easy to be truly sorry for slight sins and imperfections, and yet we must be sorry for the sins confessed that our confession may be valid—­hence we add some past sin for which we are truly sorry to those for which we may not be sufficiently sorry.

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Baltimore Catechism No. 3 (of 4) from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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