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debts when you were able! Or have you, by prodigal expenses, rendered yourself unable; and so wronged your creditors, or your own family? How often?
Have you been guilty of negligence in the securing or administering of trusts confided to your care, whether for ecolesiastical, charitable, or other purposes? Has any actual loss resulted from this negligence! To what extent ? Have you been negligent in the administration of property otherwise entrusted to you, as guardian or administrator ? If so, have others thereby suffered ? To what extent?
Have you been guilty of usury in the loan of money? How often?
Have you put off false money? How much? How often?
Have you professed any art, or undertaken any business, without sufficient skill or knowledge? And what injury has your neighbour suffered from it ?
Have you bought or received stolen goods ? or taken of those who could not give? How often?
Have you neglected your work or business to which you were hired, or by contract obliged ? How often and to what injury ? Or have you broken your promises in matters of consequence ?
N.B.-In all sins of injustice, whereby you have done any wrong to your neighbour, either in his person or in his goods, or in his character, honour, of good name, you are strictly obliged to make full satisfaction and restitution, if it be in your power; otherwise the sin will not be forgiven.
Have you, then, neglected or delayed, without just cause, to make satisfaction and restitution, when it was in your power?
The Eighth Commandment. “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour,"
Have you been guilty of telling lies ? And whether in any matter of consequence, or to the injury of any one? How often?
Have you been guilty of hypocrisy or dissimulation ! How often?
Have you entertained a bad opinion of your neighbour without grounds, or judged rashly of his actions or intentions ? How often ?
Have you been guilty of backbiting, or uncharitable conversation, by speaking of the known faults of your absent neighbour? How often?
Have you been guilty of the sin of detraction, which consists in taking away or lessening your neighbour's reputation by publishing his secret faults or defects ? How often have you done so ? From what motive? and before how many ?
Have you been guilty of calumny, which consists in saying of your neighbour what is false or uncertain ? How often ? and before how many ?
N.B.-In either case, you are obliged to restore his character as far as you are able.
Have you willingly given car to detraction or calumny? Have you taken pleasure in it? Or in any way encouraged it? Or not hindered it when you might? How often?
Have you injured your neighbour's honour by reproaches and affronts, or robbed him of his peace of mind by scoffs and derision? How often?
Have you, by carrying stories backwards and forwards, or in any other way, caused misunderstanding or quarrels betwixt others ? How often ? and to what prejudice?
N.B.- Here, also, judges, lawyers, solicitors, &c., ought to examine themselves, what injustice they may have been guilty of in managing causes, &c.; as well as accusers, witnesses, &c.
The Ninth Commandment. “ Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife." Have you taken pleasure in any unchaste thoughts or imaginations? Have you entertained any impure desires or feelings ?
The Tenth Commandment. " Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's goods." Have you desired your neighbour's goods, not caring whether you had them right or wrong? Or been in a disposition of stealing, or otherwise wronging him, if it lay in your power? How often?
Have you desired your neighbour's loss or misfortune, or any public calamity, that you might be the gainer by it? How often?
The Commandments of the Church. I. Have you neglected to keep holy the days of obligation ? Have you worked on those days without necessity, and without leave from your pastor ?
II. Have you neglected to hear mass on Sundays and holydays of obligation? or have you heard it with wilful distractions? or not taken care that your children and servants should hear it? How often?
III. Have you broken the days of abstinence commanded by the Church? or eaten more than one meal on fasting-days? or been accessary to others so doing? How often?
IV., V. Have you neglected to confess your sins once a year? or to receive the blessed sacrament at Easter ?
VI. Have you solemnised marriage at the forbidden times? Have you married within the forbidden degrees of kindred ? or with any other known impediment?
The Capital or Deadly Sins. Pride.-Have you been guilty of pride, or complacency in yourself, or contempt of others ? How often ?
Have you been guilty of vainglory, by doing your actions to procure esteem? How often?
Have you taken delight in the esteem and applause of others ? or have you been uneasy and discontented when you did not receive such esteem or applause ? How often?
Covetousness. Have you been guilty of covetousness,
in desiring or loving too much the things of this world? Have you sought after them too eagerly? or been too much distressed at the loss of them? How often?
For the sins of Lust, see the Sixth Commandment.
Gluttony. Have you been guilty of gluttony, by eating or drinking to excess, so as to endanger or injure your health or reason? How often ? and with what scandal?
Have you indulged an inordinate gratification of your appetite How often?
Have you made others drunk? or sought to make them so? or boasted of having made them so ? How often?
Envy. Have you envied or repined at your neighbour's good, either spiritual or temporal ? or rejoiced at his harm? How often ?
Have you been guilty of jealousy, in consequence of any attention or preference shewn to others ? Have you rejoiced to see them disappointed or mortified ?
Sloth. - Have you been guilty of sloth, or laziness of mind or body, which has prevented you from discharging your duty ? How often?
Have you neglected your spiritual duties? or discharged them with tepidity or indolence ? Have you studied too much your own ease, leading an uninortified and unchristian life?
Have you squandered away much of your time in idleness or useless occupation ?
Have you entertained with pleasure the thoughts of saying or doing any thing which it would be a sin to say or do? How often Have you
had the desire or design of committing any sin ? What sin? How often ?
Have you gloried in any sin whatsoever? How often? and before what company ? and what sin ?
N.B. Here, also, masters and servants, husbands and wives, lawyers and physicians, ecclesiastics and magistrates, &c. ought to examine into the sins which are peculiar to their states, and How far they may have neglected the duties of their respective rallings.
A Prayer for obtaining Contrition. I have now here before me, O Lord, a sad prospect of the manifold offences, by which I have displeased thy divine Majesty, and which I am assured will appear in judgment against me, if I repent not, and my soul be not disposed, by a hearty sorrow, to receive thy pardon. But this sorrow, O Lord, this repentance must be thy free gift, and if it comes not from the hand of thy mercy, all my endeavours will be in vain, and I shall be for ever miserable. Have mercy, therefore, on me, O Father of mercies, and pour forth into my heart thy grace, whereby I may sincerely repent of all my sins ; give me a true contrition, that I may bewail my past misery and ingratitude, and grieve from my heart for having offended thee, so good a God. Permit me not to be deluded with a false sorrow, as, I fear, I have been too often, through my own weakness and neglect; but let it be now thy gift, descending from thee, the Father of lights, that so my repentance may be accompanied with amendment and change of life, and I may be fully acquitted from the guilt of all my sins, and once more received into the number of thy servants. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.