Modern man is afflicted with a deadly disease. This disease most often strikes not at the body, but at the soul. This disease knows no boundaries. It has reached epidemic proportions afflicting the young and old just as oft as those of middle age. What is this disease of which I speak? It’s a disease called sinphobia.
What is sinphobia? Sinphobia is a fear. It’s not a fear of sinning—for most surely we have no fear of that! Rather sinphobia is the fear of speaking of sin as sin. Sinphobics are so prevalent in our culture today, that it would be no stretch at all to call us a sinphobic society.
Who cares about sinphobia anyway? Why not say instead: well I know what I think sin is, but if those others over there want to go ahead sinning, and saying it’s something good, and they think that’s okay, then I am not offended at all. The problem with this thinking is that sin is not about what offends me. Sin is what offends God! If we love God, then shouldn’t we be offended by what offends Him?
Furthermore, when sins are left unchecked by society, they multiply, and quicker than a lion tamer’s whip can crack, our sins and our brother’s sins are affecting all of us. Sin never occurs in a vacuum. Its effect is a rippling one. Like a pebble tossed onto a smooth pond, sin’s impact moves outward from the individual to society at large, affecting us all.
Sinphobic societies are dangerous places to live. If one can no longer refer to sin as sin, then we shall soon stop speaking of sin at all. If we can no longer speak about sin, then we cannot anymore preach or teach about sin either. And with no one to preach or teach about sin, how then can we ever learn the truth about sin? It would seem that no place on earth exists anymore where the truth about sin might be spoken. When the truths cannot be spoken, we soon find ourselves swimming in a cesspool of lies. The lies can be spiritually deadly, and guide us away from truth and towards a mentality of political correctness.
Sinphobia impacts how we vote. And this is where the devilish monster of sinphobia rears its most grotesque head. Cultures who cannot speak of sin, who believe there is no sin, typically elect leaders who believe there is no sin. And Heaven help politicians who call a sin a sin in a sinphobic society—as a complete head-to-toe tar and feathering most likely awaits them!
Elected leaders who believe there is no sin can enact unjust laws—like abortion and euthanasia—with reckless disregard of sin, and of God’s moral laws. The pattern becomes somewhat of a downward spiral for us all, a spiral in which our own sinphobic tendencies take us even further away from God through those we elect, and the unjust laws they proceed to enact. Sin creates a proclivity to sin… (CCC1865)
Just as sinphobia impacts the political landscape, so too the disease impacts teachers, and what can and cannot be taught in school. Sinphobia is what gives license to teachers to furnish impure sex “education” to students, but blocks teachers from teaching truths about sin. If we could but cure ourselves of our sinphobia, we would be free in the classroom and elsewhere to declare the truth, as 11-year-old St. Maria Goretti so vehemently did to Alessandro Sereneli “It is a sin. God does not want it!” So how can sinphobia be cured? Here are three steps we can take.
First, there is a lovely Lady in Heaven who had no problem talking about sin, even to young children. In 1917, our Blessed Mother showed the children of Fatima a vision of hell, with souls falling into it for their sins, most especially their sins of the flesh. A big to-do was made of it all where our Lady promised a miracle on October 13th, 1917. On this day the “Miracle of the Sun” was witnessed by a crowd of 70,000 including non-believers. It was documented by a secular press. Heaven tried hard to get our attention at Fatima. Are we listening?
We can listen to the Fatima message and do what Our Lady asked of us there (pray the Rosary, establish a devotion to her Immaculate Heart, ask pardon for our signs and stop offending God). Or we can go on lamenting the evils of this world, and ignoring our Lady and the few simple things she asked—the few things she said would bring peace to the world! She promised that in the end her “Immaculate Heart will triumph.” If we do what our Lady asked of us, she will bring peace to the world, first by bringing peace to our souls. She will help us see the truth about sin, and speak this truth as well.
Secondly, we can listen not only to our Heavenly Mother but to our Holy Mother Church, and her teachings. Here we’ll learn that if we want to make it to our final home in heaven and be more like God, then sin is simply not the way to go. The Catechism tells us how sin robs us of our resemblance to God (CCC 705), how some sins are mortal (CCC 1855) and some sins “cry out to heaven” (CCC 1867). There are capital sins which we really want to avoid as they engender other sins. The capital sins are pride, avarice, envy, wrath, lust, gluttony and sloth. (CCC1866) Scripture teaches:
Now the works of the flesh are obvious: immorality, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, rivalry, jealousy, outbursts of fury, acts of selfishness, dissensions, factions, occasions of envy, drinking bouts, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. (Gal.5:19-21)… Do you not know that the unjust will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators nor idolaters nor adulterers nor boy prostitutes nor sodomites nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God. (1 Cor 6:9-10)
Finally, we can ask God through prayer to show us our sins. We can trust He will be more than happy to answer that prayer. We may not like the answer. But if we honestly pray, then we can trust He will honestly answer. Just as we can trust that He, who loves us infinitely more than anyone, would like infinitely more than anyone, to see us at last in full recovery from our sinphobia—and living in Truth.