I was thinking recently about all of those times in my life when someone has confronted me about a behavior of mine that was leading me astray in some way. Speaking up when you see a loved one headed in the wrong direction is a spiritual work of mercy, and boy am I thankful to have received that kind of mercy a few times in my life. The theological term for the spiritual work of mercy that corrects someone going astray is “admonish sinners” (and there are some good guidelines to follow before we start making lists of who needs our mercy next:).
Modesty and Charity
Avoiding the Near Occasion of Sin
“Have you been going to mass?”
The fall semester of my freshman year of college, I was overwhelmed with starting college and with what I had experienced over the summer modeling in New York. Going to Sunday mass alone for the first time in my life quickly had led to a lack of desire to go. I was in that stage of young adulthood when I hadn’t really chosen and internalized my faith yet–it was more of an environmental given, a routine. I had stopped attending mass while I was in New York (mostly because it was intimidating to figure out how to get to the nearest one by myself), and then I found myself attending mass less and less once the school semester started up back at LSU. At some point that fall, my dad called to see how I was doing. He asked me at one point in the conversation if I was going to mass. I was surprised by that. I think I lied to him at the time and said that I was. His question stuck with me.