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19 Sep 2015 Uncategorized No comments

Pope Francis will test his diplomacy on US tour

Pope Francis’ diplomatic style and strategy is about to be put to the test — the pontiff is set for a highly anticipated appearance at the United Nations as par…

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03 Apr 2015 Q&A No comments

Should there be laws protecting homosexuals from discrimination in the workplace?

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08 Sep 2015 Europe News No comments

Italian, Polish bishops welcome papal appeal to house refugees

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03 Aug 2016 Articles Comments (2)

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18 Dec 2015 News USA Comments (2)

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04 Sep 2015 Europe News No comments

Bishops’ agency ‘disappointed’ by faith cap for free schools

Catholic Church still effectively blocked from opening free schools thanks to admissions' cap The Catholic bishops’ education agency has expressed disappointme…

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26 May 2016 Americas Asia-Pacific Europe Middle East Middle East - Africa News USA Vatican No comments

Christian Homes attacked by Muslim Mobs in Egypt

The Coptic Orthodox church has said a Muslim mob has ransacked and torched seven Christian homes in a province south of Cairo after rumours spread that a Christ…

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28 Oct 2015 News Vatican No comments

Spanish Performer couldn’t hide excitement as she meets Pope Francis.

A Spanish flamenco singer could hardly contain her emotions after she met Pope Francis at the Paul VI Hall ahead of his visit to a large Roma gypsy camp in Ital…

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18 Jul 2015 Articles Comments (1)


For those of us who want to become saints, the Church tells us to “frequent the sacraments.”   What does this really mean, though? There are, after a…

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Can someone with a mortally sinful addiction, who does not have many opportunities to confess, receive Communion?

Full Question

If for many years one has had an addiction that is mortally sinful and is trying to work through it progressively in Christ, is he allowed to receive the Eucharist at Mass? I understand that we need to go to confession, but here it is offered only weekly. If one is going to confession weekly and slips back into his addictive sin between confession and Sunday Mass, should this person refrain from receiving Holy Communion?


There are those who would say that since the behavior is addictive the degree of culpability is questionable and one may receive Holy Communion so long as one confesses as soon as possible. I do not subscribe to such an opinion so readily. Addictions are not influenza or strep throat. Ordinarily one can control addictive behavior with the combination of personal honesty, God’s grace, proper motivation, and common sense. Certainly, there are severe cases where one’s culpability can be diminished partially or even completely. In such cases the confessor will inform the penitent that a sin has not been committed. Indeed, a regular confessor or spiritual director is a very real necessity in such extreme situations. But for most people addictive behavior is far less a threat to our freedom than our permissive, victim-oriented culture is inclined to have us believe.

Most of us are far freer than we think. The fact that one cannot receive the Eucharist in the state of mortal sin can be a further motivation to avoid the occasions where one is weak. It is also possible to ask a priest to hear one’s confession outside of the prescribed times.


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