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Daily Catholic Question

What's the point of indulgences?

Going to confession recently is a condition for gaining any indulgence for oneself. You can gain an indulgence for someone deceased only if that person was truly sorry for his or her sins.

Doesn’t going to confession wipe out the sins confessed? A sin can be forgiven and yet still continue to have a harmful effect. That’s what the “temporal punishment due to sin” idea addresses.

Once we commit a sin, that sin has a life of its own—no longer totally under our control. If I knew you and told a lie about you, I might later repent of that lie and be forgiven in confession.

Unfortunately, that lie would have a life of its own. Even if I went back and told the truth to each person to whom I told that lie, I could never guarantee that my efforts would undo all the damage caused by this lie. The truth may never reach everyone who heard the lie!

Or, if I put a baseball through your window, I may be very sorry and you may forgive me—but you still have a broken window!

There is always damage between the time I sin and the time I repent and begin repairing the damage. My sin may have encouraged others—and may still do so even after I repent.

All this is not to make people feel crushed by guilt but to be realistic: My sins, your sins, anybody’s sins have a life of their own, a life which does not instantly cease when a sinner repents and is forgiven by God.

The teaching about purgatory recognizes that a person may not be ready to meet God and enjoy the beatific vision at the moment of death. Some purification may yet be needed. This is why for centuries the Christian community has prayed and continues to pray for its deceased members.

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Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Daily Catholic Question for 5/13/2013 Daily Catholic Question for 5/15/2013

George: If Mary Magdalene was the victim of misunderstanding, George is the object of a vast amount of imagination. There is every reason to believe that he was a real martyr who suffered at Lydda in Palestine, probably before the time of Constantine. The Church adheres to his memory, but not to the legends surrounding his life. 
<p>That he was willing to pay the supreme price to follow Christ is what the Church believes. And it is enough.</p><p></p><p>The story of George's slaying the dragon, rescuing the king's daughter and converting Libya is a 12th-century Italian fable. George was a favorite patron saint of crusaders, as well as of Eastern soldiers in earlier times. He is a patron saint of England, Portugal, Germany, Aragon, Catalonia, Genoa and Venice.</p> American Catholic Blog Jesus was equal to the Father but did not feel it was below his dignity to obey. We cannot be free unless we are able to surrender our will freely to the will of God. We must obey with full freedom in a spirit of unity and submission and through wholehearted free service to Christ.

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