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    Fr. Joseph Jenkins

  • The blog header depicts an important and yet mis-understood New Testament scene, Jesus flogging the money-changers out of the temple. I selected it because the faith that gives us consolation can also make us very uncomfortable. Both Divine Mercy and Divine Justice meet in Jesus. Priests are ministers of reconciliation, but never at the cost of truth. In or out of season, we must be courageous in preaching and living out the Gospel of Life. The title of my blog is a play on words, not Flogger Priest but Blogger Priest.

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Drinking & Sexual Sin

downloadQuestion

Despite being devout early on, as an adult I became intimate with bad women.  Cherished loved ones died.  I knew a period of shameful poverty.  Priests I trusted disappointed me. I developed an alcohol problem, largely to deal with loneliness and a sense of alienation. Today, I am married but still find myself depressed.  While it is wrong, I often wish I could have affairs with beautiful women— caring only about outer beauty and my own sexual fulfillment. I look at porn on the internet, go to confession, swear off it for a while, and then you can guess what occurs next. It happens again. I am tired of this cycle. I want to feel right about myself and whole again. I know this is terrible. But I am trying to be honest.

Response

You can find help for drinking and for grief management, but your remarks also touch upon the human condition and our fallen nature. The Church well understands concupiscence and the struggle with sin. That is why we have easy recourse to auricular confession. We can come to the sacrament again and again. The penitent must have a contrite heart and a firm purpose of amendment (to earnestly try to avoid sin in the future). Nevertheless, because of habit, loneliness, passion, chemistry, etc. any of us might struggle with certain sins for many years. You should not despair. God knows our hearts.

Question

Given that adultery and masturbation are both judged as mortal sins with the same spiritual consequences, then why not adultery?

Response

The consequences are not the same. In one you damn yourself, in the other you take someone to hell with you.

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