Men and women sin differently...Or do they?

This week, L’Osservatore Romano highlighted a study, just in time for Lent, on the sinful tendencies of the sexes.  The report, according to the BBC, was based on a study of confessions carried out by Roberto Busa, S.J., a 95-year-old Jesuit scholar.  The Pope’s personal theologian agreed.  "Men and women sin in different ways," said Msgr Wojciech Giertych in L’Osservatore.  Giertych listed lust as the most common sin for men; for women, pride.  So the study shows men and women sin differently.

Advertisement

Or do they?  Not so fast, I say.  Here’s my take, with Scott Simon on NPR’s Weekend Edition.  Wait for the joke at the end!

James Martin, SJ

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.
8 years 7 months ago
I have misgivings similar to those of Mr. Binder (the first comment-poster). I first heard about the study when I heard Fr. Martin's interview on NPR last Saturday morning. I kept waiting for Mr. Simon to ask Fr. Martin about the subject of the seal of Confession. I certainly wondered how the study's author, and others involved, compiled the information. More crucially, I was curious to know if any information released with the study indicated whether those who were involved had grappled with the possibly negative pastoral implications among Catholics and the puzzlement, or worse, among others regarding the appearance, at least, of playing fast and loose with the seal of Confession. Regarding Fr. Martin's joke about Confession, I started re-telling it that same day and have gleefully continued doing so! C. Wood, Portland, OR
8 years 8 months ago
It is not the results I find troubling, but the analysis itself - or rather - that such an analysis was done. People stay away from the Sacrament enough without the knowledge that someone may even informally tabulate their sins.

Advertisement

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

John Milton's Paradise Lost (published in 1667) may be more relevant in our time than ever before.
Lisa AmplemanOctober 19, 2017
Released in April 2017, "DAMN." portrays Kendrick Lamar’s internal torment as he struggles with his faith.
Olga SeguraOctober 19, 2017
iStock photo
The majority of Americans now believe that “God is not a prerequisite for good values and morality.”
Michael J. O’LoughlinOctober 19, 2017
A neighborhood destroyed by wildfire in Santa Rosa, Calif. The Diocese of Santa Rosa "has been hit hard" and "is in an ongoing state of uncertainty" because of Northern California wildfires that began the night of Oct. 8, said Bishop Robert F. Vasa. (CNS photo/Jim Urquhart, Reuters)
Upward of 3,000 buildings, including the homes of at least 15 parishioners, have been destroyed just in Santa Rosa, a city of 175,000 people.
Jim McDermottOctober 19, 2017