The Ten Commandments of Scrupulosity

Moses Smashing Tablets Rembrandt

TEN COMMANDMENTS OF SCRUPULOSITY

Important Note: If you do not specifically struggle with scrupulosity, this advice is not likely to apply to you. If you have any questions about the advice or overcoming the struggle of scrupulosity, it is very important that you meet with your spiritual director for guidance.

  1. You shall not repeat a sin in confession when it has been confessed in a previous confession, even when there is a doubt that it was confessed or a doubt that it was confessed in a sufficiently adequate and complete way.
  2. You shall not confess doubtful sins in confession, but only sins that are clear and certain.
  3. You shall not repeat your penance after confession or any of the words of your penance because you feel or think that you had distractions or may not have said the words properly.
  4. You shall not worry about breaking your fast before receiving communion, unless you actually put food and drink in your mouth and swallow it in the same way that a person does when eating a meal.
  5. You shall not hesitate to look at any crucifix or at any statue in church or at home or anywhere else because you may get bad thoughts in your mind and imagination. If such thoughts occur, they carry no sin whatever.
  6. You shall not consider yourself guilty of bad thoughts, desires, or feelings, unless you can honestly swear before the all-truthful God that you remember clearly and certainly consenting to them.
  7. You shall not disobey your confessor when he tells you never to make another general confession of past sins already confessed.
  8. You shall believe and act accordingly, so that whenever you are in doubt as to whether or not you are obliged to do or not to do something, you can take it for certain that you are not obligated.
  9. If, before you perform or omit an act, you are doubtful whether or not it is sinful for you, you shall assume as certain that it is not sinful and shall proceed to act without any dread of sin whatever.
  10. You shall put your total trust in Jesus Christ, knowing that he loves you as only God can love, and that he will never allow you to lose your soul.

By Father Don Miller, C.SS.R.

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