Dies Domini – Keeping the Lord’s Day Holy


From Torch of the Faith

Going to Church Every Sunday

During one of the early morning Masses at Domus Sanctae Marthae, Pope Francis spoke about people who have the ”face of a saint, but inside suffer from an osteoporosis of corruption… people who seem perfect on the outside, going to Church every Sunday and making big charitable donations.”

Whilst this does highlight a potential danger for all Catholics, it is easy enough to see how these words might be taken by sincere Catholics as yet another of his negative depictions of their best efforts. Again, it is not hard to see how these words could be used as grist for the mill of the Church’s enemies.

After all, it is not as if we live in an age when the Sabbath is so honoured in the wider culture that its upkeep could become merely conventional on any large scale.

In much of the Western hemisphere, the churches continue to empty out, just as the art galleries, department stores and supermarkets continue to fill up on the Sabbath.

The Bare Minimum

In these secularized times, it is true that faithful Catholics might be tempted to pridefully look down their noses at those who do not honour the Sabbath. We must always remember our own dependence on grace; for by the grace of God go we.

Perhaps Pope Francis’ words might provide him, and all of us too, with an opportunity to reflect on the fact that the person who goes to Holy Mass on a Sunday is not so much being perfect, as merely doing the bare minimum that is required by the Third Commandment of God’s Holy Law.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches: ”The Sunday Eucharist is the foundation and confirmation of all Christian practice. For this reason the faithful are obliged to participate in the Eucharist on the days of obligation, unless excused for a serious reason (for example, illness, the care of infants) or dispensed by their own pastor. Those who deliberately fail in this obligation commit a grave sin.”

Going to Sunday Mass is a bit like breathing: you go because you want to go, but also because you have to go to stay alive spiritually. And that aspect of having to go keeps one’s love for God in the realm of the objective, more than just in the emotions or the feelings.


In his book This is the Faith, the great Canon Francis J. Ripley wrote of honouring the Sabbath: ”We are to keep the Sunday holy by hearing Mass and resting from servile works… One who merely goes to Mass and forgets about God for the rest of the day can scarcely be said to keep the Sunday holy, although he may avoid mortal sin. So it is that the Church urges all to attend the other services which she provides for them, such as Rosary, Vespers, Instruction, Benediction, and also to devote some time to pious or religious reading or other exercises for the sanctification of the soul.”

Of course, in these post-modern times, one would be lucky to find such extra services in many parishes today. In our Archdiocese, it would be hard enough to find even a Sunday evening Mass in many parishes.

Some years ago, we were on a coastal walk with a Catholic priest one Sunday afternoon. Upon passing a local Catholic parish, I asked if we might stop off there to say a prayer. I was rather taken aback when the priest, seemingly surprised by my request, replied quickly that the building would certainly be closed ”because it is Sunday!”

At least the Traditional communities who offer only the Traditional Latin Mass also continue to offer liturgies like Sunday Vespers to the laity in their surrounding areas.

Building a ”Culture” of Sunday

A Post-Modern Scene: Without the holiness of Sunday at the heart of the week, and without the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass at the heart of the Sabbath, the Church is eclipsed and the wider culture begins to reflect the ensuing emptiness.

A Post-Modern Scene: Without the holiness of Sunday at the heart of the week, and without the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass at the heart of the Sabbath, the Church is eclipsed and the wider culture begins to reflect the ensuing emptiness.

It is essential that Catholics develop a ”culture” of Sunday in their families through Holy Mass, Rosary, spiritual reading, a family meal, shared relaxation and the visiting of relatives, or of other orthodox Catholics.

We also think that the setting aside of ”Sunday-best” clothes for attendance at Church is an important aspect which helps to mark Sunday as a special day for the glory of the Lord.

The Apostolic Letter Dies Domini – Keeping the Lord’s Day Holy reminds us: ”Since Sunday is the weekly Easter, recalling and making present the day upon which Christ rose from the dead, it is also the day which reveals the meaning of time. It has nothing in common with the cosmic cycles according to which natural religion and human culture tend to impose a structure on time, succumbing perhaps to the myth of eternal return. The Christian Sunday is wholly other! Springing from the Resurrection, it cuts through human time, the months, the years, the centuries, like a directional arrow which points them towards their target: Christ’s Second Coming. Sunday foreshadows the last day, the day of the Parousia, which in a way is already anticipated by Christ’s glory in the event of the Resurrection…

… In fact, everything that will happen until the end of the world will be no more than an extension and unfolding of what happened on the day when the battered body of the Crucified Lord was raised by the power of the Holy Spirit and became in turn the wellspring of the Spirit for all humanity. Christians know that there is no need to wait for another time of salvation, since, however long the world may last, they are already living in the last times. Not only the Church, but the cosmos itself and history are ceaselessly ruled and governed by the glorified Christ. It is this life-force which propels Creation, ”groaning in birth-pangs until now” (Rom 8:22), towards the goal of its full redemption. Mankind can have only a faint intuition of this process, but Christians have the key and the certainty. Keeping Sunday holy is the important witness which they are called to bear, so that every stage of human history will be upheld by hope.

Each of us needs the graces of Sunday in order to live, move and have our being in Christ. May God give us the grace to always Keep the Lord’s Day Holy!

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32 Responses to Dies Domini – Keeping the Lord’s Day Holy

  1. ginnyfree says:

    I just had a few go rounds with an elderly woman over this very issue. She made a big deal about making a huge elaborate dinner for her family every Sunday. I asked how long it took her to do so and it took more than a couple of hours so I said it was too much work for a Sunday and a mortal sin. Your should’ve seen the look on her face! After a back and forth, she claimed that her love for her family made the work sinless because she was doing it out of love for them, so my last comment on the matter was that if her family loved her, they’d not expect her to work on Sunday at all. God bless. Ginnyfree.

  2. mmvc says:

    Ok ginny, just so that I know, how many minutes can I spend cooking Sunday lunch for my family without committing a mortal sin?

  3. ginnyfree says:

    Hello MMVC.

    Here is s portion of a lesson I recently gave to some ladies on this very subject. It’s compilation was inspired by the aforementioned conversation. I hope you find your own answer in its few lines.

    Unnecessary Servile Work

    By the Third Commandment of God all unnecessary servile work on Sunday is forbidden. Servile work is that which requires labor of body rather than of mind.

    Work performed by laborers, such as farming, mechanical and industrial labor, is forbidden, even if done for pleasure and without gain. Work in which the mind has the greater share or which is done for recreation is not servile and is not forbidden. This includes reading, writing, typing, drawing, painting, playing music, traveling, hunting, fishing, and the like.

    Employers who force their employees to do unnecessary servile work on Sunday are responsible for the violation of the Third Commandment. The trial of lawsuits and public buying and selling, are also forbidden. Catholics should make provision on Saturday for their food and other necessities of Sunday, so that no store may be forced to keep open.

    The obligation to avoid servile work on Sunday is grave, and therefore its violation is a mortal sin if one works for a notable time and knowingly realizes it, but does it anyway. Servile work on Sunday is not considered a grievous sin unless it is continued beyond two hours, or becomes the cause of scandal or bad example.

    The Catechism of the Council of Trent concludes its section on the Third Commandment thusly:

    “But those who altogether neglect its fulfillment resist God and His Church; they heed not God’s command, and are enemies of Him and His holy laws, of which the easiness of the command is itself a proof. We should, it is true, be prepared to undergo the severest labor for the sake of God; but in this Commandment He imposes on us no labor; He only commands us to rest and disengage ourselves from worldly cares on those days which are to be kept holy. To refuse obedience to this Commandment is, therefore, a proof of extreme boldness; and the punishments with which its infraction has been visited by God, as we learn from the Book of Numbers,’ should be a warning to us. In order, therefore, to avoid offending God in this way, we should frequently ponder this word: Remember, and should place before our minds the important advantages and blessings which, as we have already seen, flow from the religious observance of holydays, and also numerous other considerations of the same tendency, which the good and zealous pastor should develop at considerable length to his people as circumstances may require.”

    And so if performing unnecessary servile labor on Sunday is such a terrible thing, what must we conclude then of shopping on Sunday? For what would cause businesses to stay open on Sundays if customers did not patronize their establishments on those days? And so if we do our shopping on Sunday we are causing others to have to work on Sunday. For most today working in retail are but wage slaves who aren’t even paid a living wage, and cannot afford to decline a job because they are forced to work on Sunday, because they need the job to live and all retail establishments (with notable exceptions like Hobby Lobby and Chick Fillet) force their employees to work on Sunday.

    Lesson 36: The Third Commandment

    “Remember that thou keep holy the Sabbath day. Six days shalt thou labor, and shalt do all thy works. But on the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God: thou shalt do no work on it, thou nor thy son, nor thy daughter, nor thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy beast, nor the stranger that is within thy gates. For in six days the Lord made Heaven and earth, and the sea, and all things that are in them, and rested on the seventh day: therefore the Lord blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it.” (Exodus 20:8-11)

    What is the Third Commandment?
    Remember thou keep holy the Sabbath Day.

    What does the Third Commandment oblige you to do?
    To attend Mass every Sunday and Holy Day of Obligation.
    To avoid all unnecessary manual (“servile”) work or shopping on Sundays and Holy Days.

    What kind of sin is it to miss Mass on Sunday or a Holy Day?
    To miss Mass on these days through your own fault and without sufficient reason is a mortal sin.

    Are you ever excused from the obligation of hearing Mass?
    Yes, but only for a serious reason.
    Examples: Sickness, caring for a sick person, long distance from the church, necessary work.

    Can a priest excuse you from the obligation?
    Yes, your pastor, or the priest in Confession, can excuse you for a sufficient reason.
    But it is not necessary to ask a priest if you know you have a sufficient reason.

    What does the Third Commandment oblige you to do as a parent?
    You have the serious obligation to see that your children attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days.

    What kind of work is forbidden on Sundays and Holy Days?
    Manual (“servile”) work, unless it is necessary, such as making beds, washing dishes, taking care of the sick.

    Is it wrong to enjoy sports and other recreation on Sunday?
    No, unless they interfere with your religious obligations.
    Examples: Movies, dancing.

    What kind of sin is it to do unnecessary physical work on Sunday or a Holy Day of Obligation?
    A mortal sin, if you work for a substantial length of time; a venial sin, if for a briefer length of time.
    Unnecessary physical work is considered to be a mortal sin if it totals about 2.5 to 3 hours of hard work.
    *** The entire lesson can be read at:

    The above lesson in the last question lengthens the amount of time to even as much as 3 hours, but note it changes the work from merely venially sinful to mortally sinful once the time has passed beyond the 3-hour mark. This means all unnecessary work is sinful, either mortally or venially sinful, but sinful just the same. The distinction can be made basically on the length of time. God is not sitting on a cloud in Heaven with a stopwatch in His hand, waiting for persons to stop their mundane works and notice Him on Sundays. The Commandment states NO WORK should be done on Sunday. That is the optimal. If it can be done on Saturday or Monday, then we should do it then. It is possible to keep holy the Lord’s day and do no work. The example discussed last week of preparing an elaborate dinner for family on Sunday is not only sinful, but it is a very bad example and depending on the length of time, can be mortally sinful requiring Confession prior to reception of the Eucharist again. It shows a lack of regard for the Third Commandment. Whether or not it is mortally sinful may be determined by the length of time it takes, but the fact that it is reserved for Sundays and is an elaborate meal, meaning it takes much more work than the hurried dinners of ordinary week days, shows others that a presumption has been made on the mercy of God. The person expects to be excused from the obligation of doing no work at all on a Sunday because it is done to prove they love their family. This is not so. A good example of Christian piety is love. John 14:15 clearly states that “If you love me, then you will keep my Commandments.” Other Scriptures that make this point are Jn. 14:21; Jn. 14:23; Jn. 15:10; 1 Jn. 2:3; 1 Jn. 5:3; etc. The most loving thing we can do is to live our Christian life and give good example. Actions speak much louder than words. To tell our children in the home what is the Third Commandment and then break it each and every Sunday, well that action and its effect cannot easily be undone with mere words expressed to the contrary. What is does show the rest of the family is that mere lip service is to be paid to the Commandments and nothing more. There is no reason at all to break the Commandments and use our loved ones as our excuse. Dinner for Sunday can easily be made on Saturday. It is wise to look to our Blessed Mother for the example we all should be living as Christian wives and mothers.
    Lastly, here is a link to a lesson regarding all of this from Saint Alphonsus Maria de Ligouri, Bishop and Moral Doctor of the Universal Church that will help:


    In that lesson though, you will find this: “6. Smallness of matter excuses from the violation of the precept. But what should we consider to be sufficient matter for mortal sin? Some theologians say, that to work for an hour is a mortal sin; others extend the time to two hours; but unless there is a just cause, the shortness of the time employed in work does not excuse from venial sin.” He states the limit of time spent to less than an hour and that it is still sinful, venially sinful. Consider his words to be the weightiest though as his exalted title has him a Doctor of Moral Theology. So please ladies, start making your Sunday dinner on Saturday and apologize to your family for all the years of bad example you’ve set.

    God bless. Ginnyfree.

  4. johnhenrycn says:

    Interesting. I’ve always been opposed to Sunday shopping, but hadn’t given much thought to people (mainly women) slaving over a hot stove. Not sure there’s a moral difference between making hot meals on Sundays for needy people at a food shelter and doing the same for one’s family at home. Both are acts of love. Furthermore, for working people, Sunday may be the only day when the family can enjoy a delicious meal together, rather than microwaving frozen entrées and heating up a can of soup. Did you know that some Orthodox Jews take the Third Commandment so literally that they separate their toilet paper into separate sheets before sunset on Fridays to avoid the labour of tearing sheets from the rolls for use on the Sabbath?

  5. GC says:

    It says here that for a prime rib roast on Sunday it only requires 10 minutes human servile labour, i.e.preparation. The oven does the rest of the servile work for 4 or more hours while we’re off to church and for a gossip. Wonder how long for roast leg of lamb? Do any of the other commenters know?


  6. mmvc says:

    Oh dear. Dread to think how many Sunday meal prepping, cooking, table setting/clearing and dishwashing mortal sins I’ve amassed over the years… especially at Christmas and Easter!

  7. GC says:

    15 minutes of human servile labour only for the lamb, it says here.

    mmvc: Oh dear. Dread to think how many Sunday meal prepping, cooking, table setting/clearing and dishwashing mortal sins I’ve amassed over the years… especially at Christmas and Easter!

    Thank God it’s the Year of Mercy, Maryla! Maybe we can find a priest to “accompany” you. Or would you rather be cold-called by the Bish of Rome, followed by a discreet meeting with him in the Casa Sanctae Marthae?

    You do know, of course, that you throw the veg into the roast 1 hour before turning of the oven, don’t you? That (the veg-throwing) only takes a few seconds of servile labour.

  8. johnhenrycn says:

    GC: I think we can find the answer in this recent culinary reflection, even though it was written by a mere Capon. And an Episcopalian Capon to boot. A dead Episcopalian Capon.

  9. johnhenrycn says:

    I’m told by my daughter that I make the best tossed salad in the family. The thing is – it takes me at least two hours of mortal sin to make them. Seriously.

  10. GC says:

    Mercifully, we can probably find another priest to “accompany” you too, JH. Or would you prefer the cold-call treatment?

  11. So, “Pope” Francis is criticizing “people who seem perfect on the outside, going to Church every Sunday….”

    He needn’t worry, fewer and fewer people are going.

  12. mmvc says:

    GC, I just hope Christmas Eve doesn’t fall on a Sunday this year as the traditional Polish Wigilia meal consists of 12 (meatless) courses! I doubt that either of the ‘paths of mercy’ would suffice for that… 😉

  13. johnhenrycn says:

    Food is fun. Food is sacramental. Preparing meals is possibly the next best act for leading people to Heaven after the Eucharist, which is why we love our Moms so much.

  14. GC says:

    GC, I just hope Christmas Eve doesn’t fall on a Sunday this year as the traditional Polish Wigilia meal consists of 12 (meatless) courses! I doubt that either of the ‘paths of mercy’ would suffice for that

    Deary me, Maryla, I’ve just checked and Christmas is on a Sunday this year! Looks like you’re safe if you do everything by 11:59:59 p.m. on Christmas eve.

  15. mmvc says:


  16. Tom Fisher says:

    Food is fun. Food is sacramental. Preparing meals is possibly the next best act for leading people to Heaven after the Eucharist, which is why we love our Moms so much.

    I wrote a long bad tempered rant directed at Ginnyfree before I saw this comment by JH. I’ve deleted it. JH has replied perfectly

  17. Toad says:

    So, over-cooking the Yorkshire pudding by half and hour will get any of us eternal damnation – just the same as trying to wipe out all the Jews in the world. Might as well go for the tiramisu. Go to Hell in some sort of style.
    Is it any wonder sane people are rejecting religion in large numbers – in “civilised” countries??

    “Did you know that some Orthodox Jews take the Third Commandment so literally that they separate their toilet paper into separate sheets before sunset on Fridays to avoid the labour of tearing sheets from the rolls for use on the Sabbath?”
    Indeed, JH. Aren’t other people’s religions funny?
    Not ours, of course.
    It’s as if we asked someone, “Why do you plaster your head with baked beans every Tuesday?” and when they answer, ” Because it’s part of my religion, “ we then say, “Oh, I see. That’s all right then, That makes sense.”

  18. geoffkiernan says:

    Ginnyfree at 1355. I hope you didn’t compose the above on the Sabbath

  19. GC says:

    Maryla, Martha Stewart may have solved all our servile labour problems in cooking Sunday dinners in one fell blow. Look:

    51 Quick Sunday Supper Recipes. Enjoy a delicious Sunday supper with recipes that can be made in less than an hour but taste like they took all day.

    Martha rocks! You go, girl!

    That leaves us with only 1 Sunday each year when we may find ourselves in the proximate occasion of committing grave culinary sin.

    Martha Stewart (née Kostyra) is of Polish origin, is she not, Maryla? I saw her and her mum making dozens of pierogi one night on our satellite international telly service. She may have a few tips also on how to reduce to a bare minimum the work required for your traditional 12-course Polish Christmas Eve Wigilia meal if it ever falls on a Sunday?

  20. Roger says:

    Hypocrites especially Priest and Levites and in general judging others by appearances

    Matthew 7
    [4] Or how sayest thou to thy brother: Let me cast the mote out of thy eye; and behold a beam is in thy own eye?
    [5] Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam in thy own eye, and then shalt thou see to cast out the mote out of thy brother’ s eye.

    Luke 10
    [25] And behold a certain lawyer stood up, tempting him, and saying, Master, what must I do to possess eternal life?
    [26] But he said to him: What is written in the law? how readest thou?
    [27] He answering, said: Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind: and thy neighbour as thyself.
    [28] And he said to him: Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.
    [29] But he willing to justify himself, said to Jesus: And who is my neighbour?
    [30] And Jesus answering, said: A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among robbers, who also stripped him, and having wounded him went away, leaving him half dead.
    [31] And it chanced, that a certain priest went down the same way: and seeing him, passed by.
    [32] In like manner also a Levite, when he was near the place and saw him, passed by.
    [33] But a certain Samaritan being on his journey, came near him; and seeing him, was moved with compassion.
    [34] And going up to him, bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine: and setting him upon his own beast, brought him to an inn, and took care of him.
    [35] And the next day he took out two pence, and gave to the host, and said: Take care of him; and whatsoever thou shalt spend over and above, I, at my return, will repay thee.
    [36] Which of these three, in thy opinion, was neighbour to him that fell among the robbers?
    [37] But he said: He that shewed mercy to him. And Jesus said to him: Go, and do thou in like manner.

    Francis needs to be reminded of judging by appearances

    Catholic Dictionary

    Originally the work done by serfs from which they were freed on Sundays and holy days in order to worship God. Until recently, servile work, forbidden on Sundays, was work that was chiefly physical. At present servile work is heavy manual labor, or such work as in a given society people commonly associate with strenuous effort and do not engage in when they have the freedom to avoid it. Implicit in the Church’s prohibition of servile work on Sundays is fidelity to the divine commandment to keep holy the Sabbath. This means avoiding activities that would hinder renewal of soul and body, i.e., needless work or business, unnecessary shopping or housekeeping.

    St Therese loved finding God in the Pots and Pans.
    So the question is hinder renewal of soul and body. A starving unfed body needs renewal does it not!

  21. mmvc says:

    Thank you GC. I love trying out new recipes and will enjoy checking Martha’s sin-free (pace ginnyfree ;o)) Sunday recipes out.

    Strangely, Martha Stewart may be a distant relative as my mother’s maiden name is also Kostyra. She (my mum) hails from Lubliniec in Silesia.

  22. Toad says:

    “Hypocrites especially Priest and Levites and in general judging others by appearances…”

    Well, I’m relieved you never judge me or JH by ours, Robot. Or Ginny. by hers. But then, how could you? You’ve never set eyes on us. What a blessing the web is.

  23. GC says:

    Interesting, Maryla. The chef tonight was also Silesian, but of the German persuasion. The family went over the new border after WW2 and eventually to Saxony near the Czech border. Thus, they ended up as East Germans and all that that entailed. Kepler was the name.

  24. johnhenrycn says:

    It’s Thanksgiving Sunday in Canada. Wifey has been working since this morning on our family’s turkey dinner, as I sit here sipping my __ glass of Finnish Cloudberry (21%) Liqueur. I would tell her to go to confession tomorrow if she was Catholic. As JabbaPapa would say: ” In Finland, we don’t care about appetizing or refreshing beverages. We drink to get drunk!”

  25. mmvc says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours, JH.

    Kippis! 🍷🍷

  26. bwr47 says:


    As an occasional visitor, and without any qualification other than that of being a Catholic who tries to take my faith seriously, it seems to me that you are in danger of causing more harm than good by quoting unofficial sources in a way that will seem ridiculous to most non-Catholics and to many Catholics. You say that you teach others, and it may be that you are in some way qualified to do so, but that does not – with respect – come across in your attitudes to others on this site and in your readiness to convict others of committing mortal sin.

    In relation to the particular question of keeping the sabbath holy, the (olrl) site from which you have quoted seems to be sincere and well-meaning, but that does not make it infallible. Why not go directly to the official Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC)? The CCC always takes a view that is at once in accordance with biblical and Traditional teaching, but that (though not always easy) is also compatible with the reasonable demands of life in the modern world. In relation to the sabbath, for example, it says (at para. 2184) that “Just as God ‘rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had done,’ human life has a rhythm of work and rest. The institution of the Lord’s Day helps everyone enjoy adequate rest and leisure to cultivate their familial, cultural, social, and religious lives”.

    The next para of the CCC goes on to explain that “On Sundays and other holy days of obligation, the faithful are to refrain from engaging in work or activities that hinder the worship owed to God, the joy proper to the Lord’s Day, the performance of the works of mercy, and the appropriate relaxation of mind and body. Family needs or important social service can legitimately excuse from the obligation of Sunday rest.”

    It then states that “Christians will also sanctify Sunday by devoting time and care to their families and relatives, often difficult to do on other days of the week”.

    In the light of those three quotations, I would hesitate to condemn any mother (or father, of course) who willingly as an act of love prepares a family meal on a Sunday, precisely where they are sanctifying Sunday by devoting time and care to their families. To say they are guilty of a mortal sin is in any case simply wrong in Catholic terms, as mortal sin is very clearly defined and one that (as well as being grave) must be committed with full knowledge, both of the sin and of the gravity of the offence. As you cannot possibly know the state of mind of the other individuals on this site, you are not entitled to assert that they are committing a mortal sin in any circumstances at all, let alone in relation to your erroneous interpretation of the teachings of the sabbath.

  27. ginnyfree says:

    So, condemning the messenger is permissible as long as one can shoot holes in the Message. St. Alphonsus Maria de Ligouri, Bishop and Moral Doctor of the Universal Church is the last person quoted. Are you saying his words are wrong? His voice is the loudest voice of all simply because the Church has named him and only him as THE Doctor of Moral Theology. If anyone is capable of clearly stating where the line is drawn regarding mortal and venial sins, he is. Do you understand that? I do not ask if you AGREE with that, only that you understand it. In the last link to his answer for how much work is permitted on a Sunday or holy day, you will find this rather scary morality: “I will tell you how God punishes those who work on holidays of obligation. In the diocese of Fano (Pontifical States) they were celebrating the feast of St. Ursus, the bishop and the patron of the place. A countryman went on that day to plough as usual; and when he was asked why he did not respect the festival of St. Ursus, he answered: “If he is Ursus, I am a man in want of bread.” At these words the earth opened, and swallowed him up alive, with his plough and oxen; and the marks of the chasm may still be seen in the place where it happened, which is now called Villa de Rossano.” http://catholicismhastheanswer.com/is-it-a-grave-sin-to-shop-on-sunday/
    NO work is permitted on Sunday. That is a Commandment of God. Some works may be necessary and this can be easily discerned by the well-formed conscience after one is educated about the difference between what a mortal sin is and what a venial sin is as well as how easily one can be committed. The subject of this discussion is an attempt to remind people of keeping holy the Lord’s day, yet every person who has responded to the Church’s teaching that I’ve presented has mocked that teaching. Laughing off a Commandment because you don’t like the person reminding you of it is really not wise. No one has said it is right, yet nothing I’ve presented in the little lesson I’ve given is incorrect. It is all very correct. What it isn’t is progressive, permissive wishy washy garbage that has sadly been passing for theology these dark days.
    Back to St. Ligouri; he warns that all work done on Sunday is sinful, and the not only the length of time devoted to it but the view others have of it determines the mortal nature of the sins committed if one chooses to do any work on Sunday. That means choosing to make a nice Sunday dinner IS sinful on two accounts: it tells the girls growing up around that that they are exempt from keeping the Commandments of God as they are the Moms and are expected to do their works all the days of the week regardless. This is what is known as giving scandal and bad example to others and that is what cannot be undone by lip service. The children who grew up watching mom out-do herself each and every Sunday to show off her cooking prowess under the guise of charity are getting a very clear message: lip service is what you pay to Commandment # 3 and not obedience. Ligouri correctly calls all works done on Sunday sinful, venial or mortal, but still sinful.
    I will not qualify the silly words offered that actual works of charity such as feeding the needy in a soup kitchen are considered sinful by me or anyone else I’ve quoted by attempting to educate anyone on the corporal works of mercy. I’m a mom and know really well what works I did as a stay at home mom. I know exactly what God wants me to NOT do on Sunday and once I became Catholic, I made a decision to make sure I didn’t do any Mom chores on Sunday. In fact, I make sure dinner for today is done and over with and simply a re-heat job that takes usually less than 15 minutes on Saturday. I clean it all up BEFORE my EVENING PRAYERS which once said, actually starts that period of time called Sunday. No chores get done after that. If my hubby were living and attempting to be a Catholic hubby, I’d expect he’d not expect me to break the Commandment so he doesn’t have to. That is real Christian love. This all is a choice I made for Christ as a convert quite a few years ago. I’ve kept my word to God in this regard and yes, I do feel after experiencing the open hostility of those contributors here who have chosen to mock the Commandment a bit of pride in having kept His Word in mine. The Catechism of the Council of Trent is as valid as the current CCC. It clearly states this: “To refuse obedience to this Commandment is, therefore, a proof of extreme boldness,” and it is very, very applicable to those here who have boldly posted recipes for Sunday dinners that take less than the time the Church’s Doctor of Moral Theology prescribes the faithful so as to keep holy the Lord’s day. Boldness, mocking boldness. No one is fooled by it either. Those who have eyes to see and read over this thread will understand the difference between tin and gold in regards to honest piety that is born of fear of the Lord. It is a mortal sin to work on Sunday, and if anyone bothered to follow the links I’ve provided, they’d find out the truth about what God and His Church expects from each of us on Sundays. But you’d all rather make fun of it. That’s a sad shame. One of those links provides a locution from the Blessed Virgin Mary herself on how bad a sin it is to disregard this particular Commandment. I thought at least Roger would catch that one. Missed it I guess. Nuff said. God bless. Ginnyfree.

  28. johnhenrycn says:

    Ginnyfree: Try using paragraph breaks to interrupt your stream of consciousness. People need breathers in which to reflect of your words of wisdom.

    And God Bless you too.

  29. ginnyfree says:

    Yes, you’re correct JH – my grammar stinks. My daughter is a copy editor and since she isn’t around, my mistakes escape my laptop. God bless. Ginnyfree.

  30. ginnyfree says:

    Gee Toad, do you think Martha Stewart has a recipe for skinned cat?

  31. GC says:

    Gee Toad, do you think Martha Stewart has a recipe for skinned cat?

    Ginny, before Toad hesitates an answer to that important question, can you offer us a solid guarantee that such a recipe would be canonically admissible on the Lord’s Day in terms of time duration spent in servile labour in order to effect said skinned cat Sunday supper/dinner/lunch?

  32. Tom Fisher says:

    Skinned cat can be a very fine dish. There’s more than one way to do it of course.

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