Author Topic: Working on Sunday?  (Read 531 times)

Offline TLM424

  • Hellebardier
  • *
  • Posts: 48
  • Thanked: 15 times
Working on Sunday?
« on: September 16, 2018, 07:24:10 AM »
I own an online Etsy shop where I sell baby nursery wall art and decor. Is it a sin to do work on my Etsy shop on Sundays? The type of work that I would be doing is just creating new designs in Photoshop and handling some computer work (like answering questions potential customers have, placing online orders for my inventory, or posting a shop update on social media). All of the work would be done in my living room while with my family. Iím always so unsure about what type of work is/isnít allowed on a Sunday so I figured I would ask here.

Also, is it a sin to pick up coffee at a store or order take out on Sunday?

Thanks! :)
« Last Edit: September 16, 2018, 07:34:31 AM by TLM424 »
 

Online Daniel

  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2074
  • Thanked: 416 times
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2018, 08:18:06 AM »
I would say:
- Purchasing stuff for your inventory is a sin. (We aren't allowed to buy stuff on Sunday.)
- Answering business-related questions is a sin, and posting business-related updates to Social Media is also a sin. (Both are servile.)
- Buying coffee/ordering takeout is a sin. (Again, we aren't allowed to buy stuff on Sunday.)
- Photoshop work is probably a sin. (It's not servile, but it is for monetary gain.)
« Last Edit: September 16, 2018, 08:20:38 AM by Daniel »
 

Offline Gardener

  • Drink the poison yourself.
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 7532
  • Thanked: 4620 times
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2018, 08:20:05 AM »
Typically the prohibition is against manual labor unless necessary (for example, the cows still *need* to be milked but you don't *need* to repair a fence today that is being unused in a blocked area of pasture), so more cerebral work doesn't fall under that. However, that would only be the "letter" whereas the spirit of the proscription really should tend towards the cessation of all work. But, hobbies which are physically intensive are fine (hiking, shooting, hunting, etc.). Makes no sense, huh? :D

Similarly, purchasing things often are of no need on a Sunday. If a true need arises, it is ok. I have trouble seeing how coffee is a need, but it falls under food:

Food is a more interesting category. Typically, the allowances of food ordering take into account travelers. We can make use of another's sin (working on Sunday), but it's a catch-22: we patronize because they are open; they are open because people patronize.

You're going to get a lot of conflicting answers and ultimately must distinguish on your own, do your own research, ask your pastor, etc.

"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe
 
The following users thanked this post: clau clau, Josephine87

Offline Gardener

  • Drink the poison yourself.
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 7532
  • Thanked: 4620 times
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2018, 08:22:32 AM »
I would say:
- Purchasing stuff for your inventory is a sin. (We aren't allowed to buy stuff on Sunday.)
- Answering business-related questions is a sin, and posting business-related updates to Social Media is also a sin. (Both are servile.)
- Buying coffee/ordering takeout is a sin. (Again, we aren't allowed to buy stuff on Sunday.)
- Photoshop work is probably a sin. (It's not servile, but it is for monetary gain.)

Servile work is servile work. You don't get to redefine it to fit the boundaries of a pre-conceived notion. The manualists are very clear on what is and isn't servile, and the things you mention are not.

Further, internet ordering blurs the lines as one could order Saturday and the work done on the other end could take place Sunday. We have no control over the actual timing of the "violation".
"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe
 

Offline Sempronius

  • Korporal
  • **
  • Posts: 343
  • Thanked: 152 times
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2018, 08:53:27 AM »
I was planning on meeting a friend at a coffee shop today before mass. Dont consider that to be a sin. If we were living in Christian culture I would meet him at Church and he would be a believer (sort of at least)
 

Online Daniel

  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2074
  • Thanked: 416 times
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2018, 09:10:27 AM »
Servile work is servile work. You don't get to redefine it to fit the boundaries of a pre-conceived notion. The manualists are very clear on what is and isn't servile, and the things you mention are not.
What is the precise definition of "servile"? (From what I've heard (mostly from priests), "servile" just means "the kind of work that a slave would typically do". And slaves traditionally did a lot of different kinds of work, including secretarial duties. So customer service / social media seem to fall into that category.)
« Last Edit: September 16, 2018, 09:17:20 AM by Daniel »
 

Offline Gardener

  • Drink the poison yourself.
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 7532
  • Thanked: 4620 times
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2018, 11:42:51 AM »
One can find a "servant" doing many types of work, but those servants are not necessarily doing servile work, which is essentially manual labor. Hence the epithet, "house slave" -- they were slaves, yes, but they weren't "field" slaves. Otherwise, a doctor mowing the lawn would be doing "doctor" work. Obviously absurd.


Fr. explains, based on the Catechism of the Council of Trent what servile work is at around 10:45

Reading, drawing, clerical (secretarial), music, etc., do not fall under the definition.

See at around 3:30:

"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe
 
The following users thanked this post: Daniel, TLM424, Christe Eleison

Offline TLM424

  • Hellebardier
  • *
  • Posts: 48
  • Thanked: 15 times
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2018, 02:54:39 PM »
One can find a "servant" doing many types of work, but those servants are not necessarily doing servile work, which is essentially manual labor. Hence the epithet, "house slave" -- they were slaves, yes, but they weren't "field" slaves. Otherwise, a doctor mowing the lawn would be doing "doctor" work. Obviously absurd.


Fr. explains, based on the Catechism of the Council of Trent what servile work is at around 10:45

Reading, drawing, clerical (secretarial), music, etc., do not fall under the definition.

See at around 3:30:

These videos were extremely helpful and it's so much easier to understand now. Thank you so much!
 
The following users thanked this post: Gardener, Christe Eleison

Offline St.Justin

  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 1727
  • Thanked: 645 times
  • Religion: Roman Catholic
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #8 on: September 19, 2018, 10:59:30 PM »
Why do we do this to ourselves? It borders on scruples. In the days of the Catechism this question would never come up as everyone knew where the Church stood
It has always forbidden all unnecessary servile work on all Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation.

Q. 1244. What are holydays of obligation?
A. Holydays of obligation are special feasts of the Church on which we are bound, under pain of mortal sin, to hear Mass and to keep from servile or bodily labors when it can be done without great loss or inconvenience. Whoever, on account of their circumstances, cannot give up work on holydays of obligation should make every effort to hear Mass and should also explain in confession the necessity of working on holydays.

Q. 1252. What is forbidden by the third Commandment?
A. The third Commandment forbids all unnecessary servile work and whatever else may hinder the due observance of the Lord's day.

Q. 1255. Are servile works on Sunday ever lawful?
A. Servile works are lawful on Sundays when the honor of God, the good of our neighbor, or necessity requires them.
http://www.baltimore-catechism.com/lesson32.htm

Here is a link to Father Hardon's explantion: http://www.therealpresence.org/archives/Commandments/Commandments_022.htm
 
The following users thanked this post: Gardener

Offline Kaesekopf

  • Enkindle in us the virtues of humility and patience So we too may obediently do your will faithfully.
  • Oberst
  • Major
  • *****
  • Posts: 20446
  • Thanked: 6009 times
    • Suscipe Domine
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #9 on: September 19, 2018, 11:23:22 PM »
One can find a "servant" doing many types of work, but those servants are not necessarily doing servile work, which is essentially manual labor. Hence the epithet, "house slave" -- they were slaves, yes, but they weren't "field" slaves. Otherwise, a doctor mowing the lawn would be doing "doctor" work. Obviously absurd.


Fr. explains, based on the Catechism of the Council of Trent what servile work is at around 10:45

Reading, drawing, clerical (secretarial), music, etc., do not fall under the definition.

See at around 3:30:
I've always considered "servile work" to be anything that would make me sweat. 

Sent from my STV100-1 using Tapatalk

Wie dein Sonntag, so dein Sterbetag.

I am not altogether on anybody's side, because nobody is altogether on my side.  ~Treebeard, LOTR

Jesus son of David, have mercy on me.
 
The following users thanked this post: St.Justin

Offline Gardener

  • Drink the poison yourself.
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 7532
  • Thanked: 4620 times
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #10 on: September 20, 2018, 01:16:04 AM »
One can find a "servant" doing many types of work, but those servants are not necessarily doing servile work, which is essentially manual labor. Hence the epithet, "house slave" -- they were slaves, yes, but they weren't "field" slaves. Otherwise, a doctor mowing the lawn would be doing "doctor" work. Obviously absurd.


Fr. explains, based on the Catechism of the Council of Trent what servile work is at around 10:45

Reading, drawing, clerical (secretarial), music, etc., do not fall under the definition.

See at around 3:30:
I've always considered "servile work" to be anything that would make me sweat. 

Sent from my STV100-1 using Tapatalk

Didn't know you just laid in bed all day Sunday.  :cheeseheadbeer:
"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe
 

Online Daniel

  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 2074
  • Thanked: 416 times
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #11 on: September 22, 2018, 05:36:42 PM »
So for clarification, we are allowed to do non-servile work on Sunday even when the non-servile work is for profit, correct?
e.g. Am I allowed to do my schoolwork, seeing as my education is directed towards a degree and learning experience, both of which are directed towards a possible career which will hopefully bring me sufficient income in the future?
e.g. Am I allowed to do non-servile hobbies, even when I'm getting paid to do them? (or when I am not getting paid, but will otherwise be profiting from them in the long run)?

Also, what's so special about servile work that makes it forbidden?
« Last Edit: September 22, 2018, 05:39:02 PM by Daniel »
 

Offline St.Justin

  • Feldwebel
  • ***
  • Posts: 1727
  • Thanked: 645 times
  • Religion: Roman Catholic
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #12 on: September 22, 2018, 07:12:25 PM »
So for clarification, we are allowed to do non-servile work on Sunday even when the non-servile work is for profit, correct?
e.g. Am I allowed to do my schoolwork, seeing as my education is directed towards a degree and learning experience, both of which are directed towards a possible career which will hopefully bring me sufficient income in the future?
e.g. Am I allowed to do non-servile hobbies, even when I'm getting paid to do them? (or when I am not getting paid, but will otherwise be profiting from them in the long run)?

Also, what's so special about servile work that makes it forbidden?

From Father Hardon: http://www.therealpresence.org/archives/Commandments/Commandments_022.htm

"One important, very important observation. We are accustomed to associate work with exertion, with distaste, with reluctance, with unwelcome necessity. Do I have to? Thatís work."

"Letís be clear. Abstention from labor on the Sabbath in the Old Law was not, well, doing nothing. Sleeping during the whole Sabbath, or sitting immobile-when I watch otherwise intelligent people hypnotized for hours before a television set, you shake your head. Is that a human being? No. Not laboring on the Sabbath for the Jews meant sanctifying the Sabbath by devoting the time that would otherwise be given to work to God. Now in the New Testament weíre still on the level of sanctification."

"Number four. Sundays are to be a witness to our faith; our faith in God as our Creator; our faith in God become man as our savior; our faith in God as our sanctifier. All of this is locked up in our observance of Sundays. Sundays not only may be or should be, but must be different. And I say this also for religious institutes. Some need to reexamine what they are doing. How they are behaving on what we call the day of the Lord.

Number five. Sundays are days of special graces from God. No question about it. God reserves graces that He will give us only if and when and insofar as we honor His day as He wants us to."
 
The following users thanked this post: Daniel

Offline Gardener

  • Drink the poison yourself.
  • St. Joseph's Workbench
  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 7532
  • Thanked: 4620 times
  • Religion: Catholic
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #13 on: September 23, 2018, 01:37:48 AM »
So for clarification, we are allowed to do non-servile work on Sunday even when the non-servile work is for profit, correct?
e.g. Am I allowed to do my schoolwork, seeing as my education is directed towards a degree and learning experience, both of which are directed towards a possible career which will hopefully bring me sufficient income in the future?
e.g. Am I allowed to do non-servile hobbies, even when I'm getting paid to do them? (or when I am not getting paid, but will otherwise be profiting from them in the long run)?

Also, what's so special about servile work that makes it forbidden?

Non-servile work is allowed by the letter, yes. However, you should ideally not do so to engage with the spirit of the proscription if possible.

School work is fine, but again, you shouldn't if you can help it -- do it Saturday or something. The day *should* be devoted to sanctification: holiness: set apart.

Hobbies are good! But they shouldn't necessarily comprise the whole of the day.

Why servile labor and not non-servile? Because servile labor is part of the punishment of original sin:

Quote
. [17] And to Adam he said: Because thou hast hearkened to the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldst not eat, cursed is the earth in thy work; with labour and toil shalt thou eat thereof all the days of thy life. [18] Thorns and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herbs of the earth. [19] In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread till thou return to the earth, out of which thou wast taken: for dust thou art, and into dust thou shalt return.
Gen 3

Sunday is a break from punishment, not a punishment itself.
"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe
 
The following users thanked this post: Lynne, Daniel, Josephine87

Offline Miriam_M

  • Mary Garden
  • Hauptmann
  • ****
  • Posts: 5586
  • Thanked: 3357 times
  • Never have been "MiriamB"
  • Religion: Traditional Roman Catholic
Re: Working on Sunday?
« Reply #14 on: September 23, 2018, 03:22:59 AM »

School work is fine, but again, you shouldn't if you can help it -- do it Saturday or something. The day *should* be devoted to sanctification: holiness: set apart.


Yes.

Daniel, in some cultures and in previous societies, the impulse to do this was or is more natural by the very rhythm of life.  But we in 21st Century Third World are the epitome of the non-differentiated week -- always on, always working in some form or another, always purchasing, and of course never deliberately shutting out the world to reflect, let alone to pray.  The Commandment is quite specific in terms of the orientation of the day ("keep holy"), but if Sunday is no different in emphasis than the other 6 days (you use your time in about the same way you do on other days), then the Commandment is not being obeyed unless the other 6 days are also holy in orientation.  Even consecrated religious whose full-time job is about holiness treat Sunday differently.

You're too young to have experienced this, but deep into the 20th century, most businesses, including retail, were not open on Sunday.  It was basically unheard of.  Even grocery stores and supermarkets were not open.  You had to plan your shopping for Saturday at the latest, and there were no all-night supermarkets or stores open until midnight.  Most gas stations were not open on Sundays, even.  That was probably when the population was at least nominally Christian for the most part.

I recently heard on the news the supposed "good news" that in Britain businesses have been incorporating "working vacations" into a format for employment which trades project deadlines for work weeks.  As I understand it, it's a reduction or even elimination of the standard work week "because" (I paraphrase) "it's recognized that people work even while on vacation now."  Supposedly the end of "regular hours" means that employees can choose when they want to work, as long as they meet their deadlines, and they will be expected to work on vacation if new projects come up just before their planned vacations.

I avoid all but really essential work on Sundays, and I've already given examples.  I also emphasize things like connecting with family and friends, and the spiritual and corporal works of mercy because my parish provides the built-in opportunities for the latter.  I also find that time alone is beneficial to me on Sundays; it gives me opportunity for spiritual reading and reflection.

Please try to think of it in the positive, not the negative.
 
The following users thanked this post: Daniel, Josephine87