Doing homework on Sundays


lindseyohcheer asked this question on


Dear Father,

Is homework not to be done on Sundays? Is it not a kind of *work* since I find it tiring and it is not done for fun? What kind of homework is allowed or forbidden? Homework as is a big project that you have to physically measure and make or homework that you have to study for a test? If I do my report which is just think and type on Sunday, would it be a sin? Thank you






Dear Lindsay:

The joy of the Lord be in your heart.

Thank you for writing and asking.

First, I would like to direct your attention to the corresponding number of the Catechism of the Catholic Church regarding the precepts of the Church:

"2185. "ON SUNDAYS and other holy days of obligation, the faithful are to refrain from engaging in WORK or activities that hinder the worship owed to God, the joy proper to the Lord's Day, the performance of the works of mercy, and the appropriate relaxation of mind and body.[Cf. CIC, can. 120.] Family needs or important social service can legitimately excuse from the obligation of Sunday rest. The faithful should see to it that legitimate excuses do not lead to habits prejudicial to religion, family life, and health.

The charity of truth seeks holy leisure- the necessity of charity accepts just WORK.[St. Augustine, De civ. Dei 19, 19: PL 41, 647.]"


As you see the Catechism offers you the criteria in order to decide with responsibility. It should not hinder:

- worship

- joy

- performance of work of mercy

- appropriate relaxation

Interesting that the Sunday is a day for works of mercy, visiting, for instance, the sick or the poor.


Personally I think that you should try to get your homework done during the week. However, if you couldn't finish it I think that you can do it on Sunday occasionally. But...

it shouldn't become a habit.

Think of that: The ancient Christians taught that Sunday is an anticipation of eternity. Therefore, you should occupy yourself with things that are compatible with heaven. It's like developing a habit. Some wise men even say that there is a peculiar taste and perfume on the Lord's day you can perceive if your spiritual senses are awake.

It would interest me very much to hear what you, at your age, think is compatible with heaven.

You see, it's not so much about sin but about being aware. Perhaps a comparison can indicate that. A pilgrim crossing a meadow observed a young shepherd jumping for joy and crying out loud: Amen! He asked what it meant and the youngster retorted: "Look, it's Sunday and at this moment there are millions and millions of persons praising the Lord in joy and bliss. And I join them saying 'Amen' to that. Isn't it wonderful!"

Working on Sunday is missing that kind of fun. Working without real necessity is dumb.

God bless you

and have a wonderful Sunday.

Hopefully you can "smell" and "taste" it.

I think your nom de plume "lindseyohcheer" is a good portent for that.







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