What's the difference between contrition and attrition?


Full Question

What's the difference between contrition and attrition?

Answer

Contrition is sorrow for one’s sins based on the selfless motive of love for God and sorrow for having offended him. Attrition is sorrow for one’s sins based on the fear of punishment. For someone in the state of mortal sin (1 John 5:16-17), perfect contrition is required in order to reconcile with God.


Catholic Answers Staff