In comments likely to enhance his progressive reputation, Pope Francis has written a long, open letter to the founder of La Repubblica newspaper, Eugenio Scalfari, stating that non-believers would be forgiven by God if they followed their consciences.
Responding to a list of questions published in the paper by Mr Scalfari, who is not a Roman Catholic, Francis wrote: “You ask me if the God of the Christians forgives those who don’t believe and who don’t seek the faith. I start by saying – and this is the fundamental thing – that God’s mercy has no limits if you go to him with a sincere and contrite heart. The issue for those who do not believe in God is to obey their conscience.
“Sin, even for those who have no faith, exists when people disobey their conscience.”
Robert Mickens, the Vatican correspondent for the Catholic journal The Tablet, said the pontiff’s comments were further evidence of his attempts to shake off the Catholic Church’s fusty image, reinforced by his extremely conservative predecessor Benedict XVI. “Francis is a still a conservative,” said Mr Mickens. “But what this is all about is him seeking to have a more meaningful dialogue with the world.”
I get that directly damning someone to Hell is way above4 his pay grade, but warmed over universalist pabulum about everyone going to Heaven is not even in his job description.
Now… any quote from mainstream media is suspect, but the Vatican didn’t back down… Consience? Hitler followed his conscience. So does an abortionist.
I say all of that with no glee or any hint of schadenfreude. We all need a Pope who is a staunch defender of the true faith and not some muddle-headed universalist. I hope he clarifies that statement.
The last 2 sentences are worrying but he starts out ok with ” God’s mercy has no limits if you go to him with a sincere and contrite heart.” The rest seems like relativism.
I can barely tolerate “follow your heart” when I have to suffer thru a Disney princess movie; I’d rather not hear it from my pope. If this keeps up it’s going to bring out my inner Ignatius J. Reilly…
It’s not true across the board, but pretty good rule of thumb God-less people tend not to have the best of consciences. Had such high hopes for Pope Francis, too. Damn. Guess I really do have to realize John Paul II isn’t walking through that door.
I was disappointed too, Eric. Our much beloved Pope John Paul was so opposed to liberation theology or so called “Social Justice” primarily because of his background, and that’s where we seem to be headed. I believe our Church will survive, and according to Pope John Paul II, it will.
“The future of the Church…will be a Spiritualized Church that does not rely on a political mandate and that curries favor with the right as little as with the left. It will be a difficult time for the Church for the process of crystallization and clarification will cost her much valuable energy. The process will be all the harder because it will be just as necessary to root out sectarian narrow mindedness as boastful self will. The way will be long and wearisome just as the way that led from false progressivism on the eve of the French Revolution …but after the purification of these uprootings, a great strength will emanate from a spiritualized and simplified Church…it seems certain to me that very hard times await the Church…her own crises has, as yet, hardly begun”. Pope John Paul II
Lots of serial killers follow their hearts, and we can see where that leads them!
I don’t see that anywhere in what the Pope has has actually said. I know it’s come up here before, Floyd, and I know you don’t accept the teaching, but before you can cast judgement on what the Pope is saying I think you should have an understanding – note: understanding, not acceptance – of the Church’s teaching regarding Heaven, Purgatory, and Hell. A study of the Catechism of the Catholic Church could be useful in that regard. Here are a few things that stood out for me while reviewing the Catechism:
Article 12, II. Heaven, para. 1023: Those who die in God’s grace and friendship and are perfectly purified live for ever with Christ. They are like God for ever, for they ‘see him as he is,’ face to face-(Footnote 596: 1 Jn 3:2, 1 Cor: 13:12, Rev 22:4) …
para. 1027: This mystery of blessed communion with God and all who are in Christ is beyond all understanding and description. Scripture speaks of it in images: life, light, peace, wedding feast, wine of the kingdom, the Father’s house, the heavenly Jerusalem, paradise: ‘no eye has seen, nor ear heard, not the heart of man conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him.’-(Footnote 601: 1 Cor 2:9)
III: Purgatory, para. 1030: All who die in God’s grace and friendship but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven.
Nothing I see in that selection you’ve posted contradict the Catechism. I think Pope Francis has a very good grasp on theology. I know we won’t agree, but in our disagreement let’s not forget the fate of the thief on the cross who at the moment of his death, declared Jesus his Lord, and at that moment was assured of being in Heaven a mere word from Christ.
And I just want to note that I think the key portion of what I shared above, is that no matter what we say here on earth, communion with God is a “mystery … beyond all understanding and description.”
Daniel… Come on man. “Let your conscience be your guide” is Jiminy Cricket, not Jesus Christ. It is also not even good Catholic theology much less generally accepted Christian orthodoxy.
All that was rationalizing a man you highly respect. One of the main pluses of being a Protestant is calling bullshit on a preacher when he says wrong stuff. Francis missed the mark here.
Extracting all of this H2O from where it is safely sequestered underground and releasing it into the atmoshpere will result in immense changes to the local climate, and accelerate global climate change!
Holy cow! If they keep that up, Kenya will become the new “bread-basket” for the world! “Purple mountain’s majesty above the fruited plain!”
Oh,lord,next thing you know they might find…OIL!!
Test. My comments won’t post. Am I going to have to invest in an Apple?
1 apple every 8 hours keeps 3 doctors away.
They have three doctors in those Apple stores? No wonder I hear people have to wait forever.
It also explains why I had to turn my head and cough when I picked up an iPad. I thought it was the next step from constantly having to “read” User Policies and hit ‘I agree’
There may not be doctors in them but there’s something about them that reminds me of THX 1138.
Robert Duvall movie?
George Lucas movie starring Duvall.
Good movie…saw it when I was about 14,ie,the Dark Ages!
Ah, Texacalirose…just another woman trying to feed a man an apple! G’morning Eve!
Some hard Apple cider!
I prefer my women with gold, not gold themselves!
Coffee, krullers and coins(gold)! I know that was a stretch, but I’m desperate this morning!
“I prefer my women with gold, not gold themselves!”
I wish I knew how to write in dialect (my God, my second ‘Confederacy of Dunces’ reference this morning – but I never saw anyone better at it than John Kennedy Toole), so just imagine you’re hearing this in Sean Connery-Welchspeak: “Well yes, I guess I did say I wanted a gold statuette some day….”
I was thinking of asking 3D about their favorite funny books…”A Confederacy of Dunces” is on my list.
The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy
I am not sure I can remember a morning when you were not desperate.
If I wasn’t already married, I would love to get a restraining order from her.
JimmyC, I totally understand that sentiment, and will certainly steal the line from you to use away from the keyboard, but in this specific instance, I’m not sure how well it’s workin’. A bowhunting, rifle-loving, Army non-com is probably the last person to depend on paperwork to keep the stalkers away
Even if the 9/11 hijackers had been motivated by American foreign policy (they weren’t), posting this on the anniversary of 9/11 is like going to the funeral of a woman who had been raped and murdered by thugs, and telling her family that it was her fault for wearing such a short skirt. Except he did it to the whole country, not just one family.
Hey libertarians, I hope your support of this whackjob was worth pissing away the last election, I really do. Obamacare, NSA spying, and maybe a war with Syria for the next 3+ years, but you got to have your third party temper tantrum. Congrats.
The last election was pissed away by the Republican establishment,so I don’t know what your point is, Jimmy.The mandarins of the GOP are just a bunch of Washington Good Ole Boys,whose slogan is “go along to get along”.Barry Goldwater had a slogan,too:”A Choice,not an Echo”.The GOP should be the natural home of the tea party and libertarians.Only a grassroots rebellion going to save it.Otherwise,we’ll just hear the echo of “lose,lose,lose”.
Points taken, Scott M, but based upon the above sentiment, which he blared loud and clear in one of the initial debates, Ron Paul was the absolute wrong candidate to be the harbinger of the libertarian/Tea Party choice. Rand on the other hand, till further notice is my choice for the next President of the USA.
American Conservatism is bubbling aromatic cauldron of freedom and ideas,yet the GOP leadership sits on the lid,desperate to keep their asses in the seats at the table of status quo.
You mean the next non-President of the United States. No Tea Partier will win presidency. Just like Al Sharpton wouldn’t win the presidency either. Too politically extreme, even for their own party.
Yeah, I guess believing in constitutional restraints on government is just TOO extreme, these days.
Ha! After consistently insisting on its non-existence, BarryO admits the Tea Party movement is alive, A-LIVE!!!!
Welcome to my parlor, said the spider to the fly-by …
Nice try, but still granting no traffic to Big Hollywood. That said, I saw the first point via Christian Toto’s Facebook page, and since I’ve been going through a recent Screaming Blue Messiahs renaissance (on vinyl no less), it’s too bad they still aren’t together.
I said good morning to a second grade student today, and he flipped me the bird.
Did you pop him in the mouth, or some other corporal punishment?
Obviously there is parenting missing in his life!
I wrote him up, and since the first period is my planning time, I was able to take him off his teacher’s hands and walk him down the office. I found out later that he was suspended for trying to pull the fire alarm.
Sounds like he’s well on his way to being a burger flipper for BK, or an inmate somewhere!