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86. The Stain of Sin

1. Sin is called, by metaphor, "a stain on thesoul." A stain is a blot or ugly mark which destroys what isbright and comely. A stain is caused by contact with soiling andunsuitable things. Sin dims or blots out the brightness ofperfected human nature; it blots out the wisdom and grace of God inthe soul. It is therefore a stain upon the soul. We speak here ofgrave sin, not of the actual sin which is called venial.

2. A stain remains after the contact that caused it hasceased. So also the stain of serious sin remains in the soul afterthe act of sin has been completed. This stain is not removed exceptby a new act of returning by recovered grace to the unsmirchedbeauty of the soul.

"We must not be behind time in doing good; for death will not be behind his time. "
St Phillip Neri

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"Whom do you seek, friend, if you seek not God? Seek him, find him, cleave to him; bind your will to his with bands of steel and you will live always at peace in this life and in the next."
St Alphonsus de Liguori

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"Happy is the youth, because he has time before him to do good. "
St Philip Neri

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