39. Moral Conscience
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     It would not have helped for God to has engraved in human nature the moral law that directs and safeguards freedom if he had not given an innate ability to know it. So that the moral imperatives actually guide the conduct of man to God, who is the author of the law. However, Providence does not fail and as the Pastoral Constitution Gaudium et Spes of Vatican II taught: "Deep within his conscience man discovers a law which he has not laid upon himself but which he must obey. Its voice, ever calling him to love and to do what is good and to avoid evil, sounds in his heart at the right moment. . . For man has in his heart a law inscribed by God. . . His conscience is man's most secret core and his sanctuary. There he is alone with God whose voice echoes in his depths."(n. 16).

  A. Choose one of these words and answer: law, warning, evil, regular, chest or heart.

 Deep within his conscience, man detects a


 We must love, do what is good and avoid


 The man has a law written by God in his


  Main ideas

1. What is conscience?

   Conscience is the inner voice that says to man the goodness or badness of an action in order to do good and avoid evil. It is the judgment of reason whereby the human being recognizes the moral quality of a concrete act.

    Conscience resonates and warns, and if we have done something that conscience disapproves, it pricks; but if we have done right, it shows its approval and praise.

2. Different states of conscience

   In order to properly orient the use of freedom and in accordance with the judgment of conscience, it is useful to know the various states of conscience. Regarding the agreement by the person, we have:

    a) True conscience: When it judges the morality of the act, it is certain that it is as conscience dictates; It is a firm assent.

    b) Doubtful conscience: When the moral judgment is known and there is a fear that it is in a different way- without firm assent, so there is no assent and moral judgment is suspended.

    In view of the object and its conformity with the moral law, there are:

    a) Strict conscience: when the moral judgment is consistent with the objective law so that the action is really good or bad.

    b) False conscience: Iwhen the moral judgment does not conform to the norm. what it is dictated as good is bad, or what it is dictated as bad is good; This judgment naturally comes from the error.

3. We must always act with true conscience

   The vocation of man is the will of God that is indicated by conscience; However, it is not always known. In this case, we expose ourselves to do the opposite of what God wants, and we question our destiny risking sin. So we should always act with true conscience.

    When true conscience is based on righteousness of moral judgment, there is no difficulty. But what if the certainty is based on the error? If the error is invincible, we must follow the true conscience and the action is subjectively good, although it does not meet the law, because it is what conscience dictates and the will wants the good. When the error is beatable, there is a bad will and we can not talk about true conscience as a rule of conduct. What we should do is leave the beatable error.

  B. Choose one of the following words and answer: conscience, freedom, praise, pricks, clear, doubtful, true, strict or wrong.

 The inner voice that says to man the goodness of an action is

 If man has done a bad thing, the consciousness
 If man have done a good thing, the conscience
 According to the security, conscience may be true or
 When we know that the action is good or bad, it is
 When there is no certainty of being right or wrong is  
 When moral judgment meets the objective law is
 When moral judgment do not meet the objective law is
 We must always act with

4. The formation of conscience

   This explains the need and the obligation that man has to form his conscience in order to know what the will of God is. Because conscience has given us to know and to complish the standard. The means for forming the conscience are:

    a) To know the Christian doctrine: where the mysteries of faith are taught, along with the moral demands that need the condition of God's creatures, and in the case of Christians, the condition of adoptive sons and disciples of Jesus Christ. In this sense, we must be attentive to what the pastors of the Church say: the pope, bishops and priests.

    b) Do not act rashly, but think calmly the determination to be taken: for the judgment of conscience is strict, true and safe.

    It is useful to do an examination of conscience, seeing how we have acted during the day.

    c) Ask for advice: we have to know to ask people who can help us, as parents, the priest, the catechist, the teacher or a good friend.

    d) The spiritual guidance with a priest: it is certainly an excellent way where the formation of conscience is set in personalized form, so that it is always oriented toward the good.

5. Importance of the formation of conscience

   Few people are aware of the importance of its formation and often guide the moral requirements to avoid hazards, maintaining a certain anonymity. But human responsibility means much more: those of the parents, the authorities, the teacher, the priest ... The man is a social creature, said Aristotle, and is responsible for his own behavior and the positive or negative influence on the behavior of others. In the negative sense, Jesus warns of the gravity of scandal; in a positive sense, he remembers that he has come to men: "have abundant life".

6. Rules for decide with conscience

   Normally, when we take care of the formation of conscience, it is not difficult to know and to do good; and when any difficulty occurs, the inner attitude of seeking the judgement of the will of God provides the solution. These rules are useful:

    - we can never do evil so that good.

    - we should treat others as we want them to treat us.

    - Act respecting the neighbor and his conscience.

Catechesis course. Mister Jaime Pujol Balcells and mister Jesus Sancho Bielsa. EUNSA. Navarra. 1982. With the permission of the authors.

  C. Choose one of these words and answer: freedom, conscience, Christian, pagan, speed, serenity, rest, exam, money, advice, priest, sacristan, benefit, good, you or us.

 We all have the obligation to train the

 To know the mysteries of faith, we must know the
 Do not act rashly but think with
 It helps a lot to do every day a brief
 To ask the formed people is to ask for

 The best way is with spiritual guidance of

 We can never do evil so that
 We should treat others as we want them to treat
 Act respecting others and their

  Catechisms Questions

1. What is moral conscience?  Conscience is the inner voice that says to man the goodness or badness of an action in order to do good and avoid evil.

2. And the man must follow his conscience?  The man is obliged to form an strict and true conscience and should always follow them.

  D. Choose the correct button. The possible answers are below:



 What is the moral conscience?
 And the man must follow his conscience?



 The man is obliged to form a strict and true conscience and should always follow them


 The inner voice that says to man the goodness or badness of an action in order to do good and avoid evil.

  Purposes of Christian life

– Make a brief exam of conscience before go to bed to see if we have acted right.

– Think if we are acting with strict and true conscience.

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®Arturo Ramo García.-Record of intellectual property of Teruel (Spain) No 141, of 29-IX-1999
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