The Third, Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Commandments of the Church

Lesson 22 from the Baltimore Cathechism

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293. What is meant by the commandment to confess our sins at least once a year?

By the commandment to confess our sins at least once a year is meant that we are strictly obliged to make a good confession within the year, if we have a mortal sin to confess.

Confess, therefore, your sins to one another. (James 5:16)

294. Why should we go to confession frequently?

We should go to confession frequently because frequent confession greatly helps us to overcome temptation, to keep in the state of grace, and to grow in virtue.

295. What sin does a Catholic commit who neglects to receive Holy Communion worthily during the Easter time?

A Catholic who neglects to receive Holy Communion worthily during the Easter time commits a mortal sin.

He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has life everlasting and I will raise him up on the last day. For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. (John 6:55-56)

296. What is the Easter time in the United States?

The Easter time in the United States begins on the first Sunday of Lent and ends on Trinity Sunday.

297. What is meant by the commandment to contribute to the support of the Church?

By the commandment to contribute to the support of the Church is meant that each of us is obliged to bear his fair share of the financial burden of the Holy See, of the diocese, and of the parish.

So also the Lord directed that those who preach the gospel should have their living from the gospel. (I Corinthians 9:14)

298. What is the ordinary law of the Church to be observed at the wedding of a Catholic?

The ordinary law of the Church to be observed at the wedding of a Catholic is this: A Catholic can contract a true marriage only in the presence of an authorized priest and two witnesses.

299. Does the Church forbid Catholics to contract marriage with certain persons?

The Church does forbid Catholics to contract marriage with certain persons, and the following are examples: first, a marriage with a non-Catholic; this is a mixed marriage; second, a marriage with a second cousin, or any relative closer than a second cousin.

300. Why does the Church forbid Catholics to marry non-Catholics?

The Church forbids Catholics to marry non-Catholics because mixed marriages often bring about family discord, loss of faith on the part of the Catholic, and neglect of the religious training of the children.

And it is better to die without children, than to leave ungodly children. (Ecclesiasticus 16:4)

301. Does the Church ever permit mixed marriages or marriages between close relatives?

For grave reasons the Church sometimes permits mixed marriages or marriages between close relatives; such a permission is called a dispensation.

302. Does the Church allow Catholics to marry during Lent and Advent?

The Church allows Catholics to marry during Lent and Advent, though they should do so without much festivity. A Nuptial Mass is now allowed during these seasons.

303. What is a Nuptial Mass?

A Nuptial Mass is a Mass which has special prayers to beg God's blessing on the married couple.

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