Buried Alive! The ABC’s of Catholic Doctrine By Lianne Tiu

11There is a story in the newspaper about a woman who was buried alive in trash, which she had accumulated for the past thirty years. When she was rescued, she explained that the trash was really her treasure. We may be somewhat like her when we avoid going to confession. The “trash” of our sins keep piling up until we are buried alive in them.

Sometimes we do not want to get rid of our sins because we are attached to those “earthly treasures.” We are afraid the priest will ask us to make changes of our sinful lives.

Moreover, many of us tend to disguise, ignore, or glamorize sins by giving them other names or interpretations. We refuse to see them for what they really are – that sins are the rejection of God and His laws. St. John Paul II said, “learn to call sin, sin. And do not call it liberation or progress, even if the whole of fashion and propaganda are against you.” He tells us “…to rediscover the sense of sin.”
Sin weighs us down. It prevents us from soaring high to God. Sin clips our wings spiritually because it clouds our intellect, weakens our will to do good and avoid evil, and prevents us from loving God.

Many of us consider ourselves good people. When asked to go to confession, we believe that we have not committed any sins. This self-assessment is so different from that of the saints. The greatest saints actually considered themselves the greatest sinners. Their humility and love for God made them acknowledge that they were less than perfect and that they needed improvement.
We cannot remain buried alive in sin. The first step is to acknowledge that we are sinners! It hurts to admit the truth. Next step is to be sorry for our sins (because they offend God), resolve to change our evil lifestyle, and go to the sacrament of Penance. God’s love and mercy will rescue us from the trash of sins and give us spiritual strength to seek instead heavenly treasures.

(Reference: “You can become a Saint” by Mary Ann Budnik; Pope John Paul II, General Audience, April 1981 and September 1986)