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Question Title Posted By Question Date
God Knows My Heart Diego Monday, June 17, 2019


I know many people who claim they believe in God, say they are faithful Catholics, pray every day, but do not follow the laws of the Church especially being faithful to Mass attendance, are living in invalid marriages, living with their girl/boy friend, same sex activities, etc. They say they will pray for me if I have some problems.

They know they are wrong, but will always use the excuse, "God knows my heart. He understands my situation and you have no right to judge me. I love God. Blah, blah, blah, and more of same." How should we answer these people. Should we just leave them alone and merrily go our way and let them go their way and not say anything? Of course I don't want to point a finger at them and start a confrontation. How can we lovingly correct them and hope they will see the error of their ways.

Question Answered by Bro. Ignatius Mary, OMSM(r), LTh, DD

Dear Diego:

Love demands that we tell the truth. It is true God knows the hearts of all, but it is not true that God accepts the sin in our lives. Yes, God knows their hearts. He knows their sins and their refusal to repent. He also knows that if they do not repent they may find themselves in hell.

We need to respond to such persons with this truth. God does not accept sin and there is no circumstance that justifies the sin. There is no condition of the heart that justifies sin.

We need to tell such persons that they need to pray, accept the teachings of Christ, to give up their sin, and to return to the friendship with God and His Church. Urge them to go to confession and pray for them.

Do not get into arguments. That is unproductive. Tell them the truth simply and calmly and then pray for them. Leave it to the Holy Spirit to convince them. It is not our job to convince, it is our job to give the message, with persuasion, but not to knock 'em over the head until they give in.

As for judging, actually we do have the right to judge sin, even in others. We have a duty to do so as it says in the Catechism:

1868 Sin is a personal act. Moreover, we have a responsibility for the sins committed by others when we cooperate in them:

- by participating directly and voluntarily in them;

- by ordering, advising, praising, or approving them;

- by not disclosing or not hindering them when we have an obligation to do so;

- by protecting evil-doers.

1869 Thus sin makes men accomplices of one another and causes concupiscence, violence, and injustice to reign among them. Sins give rise to social situations and institutions that are contrary to the divine goodness. "Structures of sin" are the expression and effect of personal sins. They lead their victims to do evil in their turn. In an analogous sense, they constitute a "social sin.

Now, we never judge a person's soul to hell, but we are to judge actions and ideas, but we are not to make judgments hypocritically. See the essay, Three Secret Strategies of the Devil. It will explain this in detail.

God Bless,
Bro. Ignatius Mary

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