It has been said that
every mortal sin results in seven years penance in this world or the equivalent
"According to the
holy Doctors, for every mortal sin a man is obliged by God to seven years of
penance in this world, or the equivalent in purgatory; the reason being that
every mortal sin is an offense against the seven Gifts of the Holy Ghost." (St.
"[I]f you assign,
on the average, as St. Frances of Rome says, seven years for the expiation of
one mortal sin, remitted as to the guilt, who does not see that we arrive at an
appalling duration [in Purgatory] and that the expiation may especially be
prolonged for many years, and even for centuries? Years and centuries of
torments! Oh! if we only thought of it, with what care should we not avoid the
least faults! with what fervor should we not practice penance to make
satisfaction in this world!" (Fr. Schouppe)
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