Hard as Nails Ministries
How the Saints Battled Scrupulosity

How the Saints Battled Scrupulosity

By:  Mission Team November 29, 2020
#AmazingNation, #God, #Scrupulosity, #Struggle

For five years I struggled with a form of OCD known as scrupulosity. In scrupulosity I obsess over the littlest things thinking that they are serious sins. I remember most days feeling an enormous guilt that consumed my soul. This guilt was all that I thought about, which prompted me into going to confession every week. At first, I thought I was alone, but I found that multiple friends and family members were suffering with the same thing. You are not alone in your scrupulosity. There are even saints who have experienced it, and it is possible to learn from them. This is what they have to say:

St. Therese of Lisieux

First, don't allow that feeling of guilt to stop you from pursuing God. If we hurt someone we love, we must not avoid them but continue to pursue them. Yes, try to get to confession, but do not think that God doesn't want you to talk to Him until then.

“We who run in the way of Love must never torment ourselves about anything. If I did not suffer minute by minute, it would be impossible for me to be patient; but I see only the present moment, I forget the past, and take good care not to anticipate the future. If we grow disheartened, if sometimes we despair, it is because we have been dwelling on the past or the future.”

St. Alphonsus Ligouri
Once we receive the sacrament of confession, we must now strive not to sin again. However, if the priest instructs you that the sin you committed was not mortal, or even a sin at all, then you should listen to St. Alphonsus.

“The scrupulous, who have doubts about everything, must follow another rule: they must obey their confessor. When he tells them to conquer their doubts, and to act against scruples, they should obey with exactness; otherwise they will render themselves unable and unfit to perform any spiritual exercise.” 

He also says,

“Obedience to a confessor is the most acceptable offering which we can make to God, and the most secure way of doing the divine will.”

St. Ignatius of Loyola
Lastly, along with an obedience to a priest, spiritual director, or mentor, continue to receive the Eucharist. Pray that Christ will heal you of the false guilt, and that our Blessed Mother may grant you peace.

“One of the most admirable effects of Holy Communion is to preserve the soul from sin, and to help those who fall through weakness to rise again. It is much more profitable, then, to approach this divine Sacrament with love, respect, and confidence, than to remain away through an excess of fear and scrupulosity.”

Therefore, don’t be discouraged. Even some of the saints battled scrupulosity. They felt the guilt, the anxiety, the confusion, the fear, and the abandonment that you feel. But they offered these ways to overcome and condemn scruples once and for all. Now it is your turn to simply accept their advice.

Photo Credits:
"St Alphonsus Ligouri" by Lawrence OP is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
"40+296 Hello?" by bark is licensed under CC BY 2.0
"St Ignatius of Loyola in the Cave of Manresa" by Lawrence OP is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Unknown photographer, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

About the Author Mission TeamThe mission team is made up of writers within the HN team who serve for a time with our ministry to Awaken the World to the Power of God's Love. Through their efforts, their vision of making a world where no one suffers alone is an encouragement to many hurting people of all ages. 


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