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  #1  
Old Apr 28, '10, 10:01 pm
Redman1986 Redman1986 is offline
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Default Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

I was raised Catholic, am now in my early 20's, and have recently made the decision to leave the Catholic church. I was curious about what the Catholic church itself would say about me leaving, and according to the Catechism, someone who has full knowledge of the church's mission, beliefs etc, and then leaves the Catholic church, will not achieve salvation. It sounds like I'm going to hell.

This seems kind of weird. I suppose I can understand how the Catholic church got so big if it has a "you go to hell if you leave" clause in the Catechism.

Thoughts?
  #2  
Old Apr 28, '10, 10:16 pm
choy choy is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

its not a clause

people who say that going to hell is a threat are misinformed

the Church is merely telling you of the consequences of your action. its like, if a child plays with a lit candle and his dad tells him, "don't play with the candle or else you will get burned." is that a threat? if the child continues to play with the candle and does indeed get burned, is it a punishment from the dad? or is the dad merely stating a fact that playing with candles can lead you to get burned?

same with the Church. going to hell is not a threat. the Church doesn't have any power to send you to hell anyway. only a person can choose to go to hell by abandoning God through sin
  #3  
Old Apr 28, '10, 10:28 pm
Redman1986 Redman1986 is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

Thanks for the answer. It made me think. But I've never thought the church would actually send you to hell. I know God is the only one who can send you there. Regardless, the church telling me that I'll go to hell if I leave seems to be a bit corrupt and suspicious. When I step outside of the box of Catholicism, and stop trying to defend my faith, I realize that no group should ever condemn its nonmembers.
  #4  
Old Apr 28, '10, 10:33 pm
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Sarah_Angel Sarah_Angel is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

I think the fact that you are even asking this question shows that, perhaps, you weren't fully catechized?

Why are you leaving in the first place? I think that's important in determining whether or not you're going to Hell, not that individual people can judge that.
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  #5  
Old Apr 28, '10, 10:42 pm
choy choy is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

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Originally Posted by Redman1986 View Post
Thanks for the answer. It made me think. But I've never thought the church would actually send you to hell. I know God is the only one who can send you there. Regardless, the church telling me that I'll go to hell if I leave seems to be a bit corrupt and suspicious. When I step outside of the box of Catholicism, and stop trying to defend my faith, I realize that no group should ever condemn its nonmembers.
well, the Church isn't condemning its non-members. its just stating the facts according to what was taught by Jesus.

you first should see the Church beyond the building standing in the Vatican. the Church is not St. Peter's Basilica, or that building down the road with a cross on top. the Church is the communion of believers. we are united by faith, being one with each other in Jesus Christ. leaving the Church means leaving the Body of Jesus Christ, refusing to be part of what is the Bride of Jesus

remember, Jesus describes His Church as two things. one is His bride, the other is His body. if you leave the Church then you cannot become one with Jesus because Jesus is One with His Church. abandonment of the Church is abandonment of Jesus, and Jesus said those who deny Him on earth, He will deny before the Father in heaven (paraphrasing here)
  #6  
Old Apr 28, '10, 10:43 pm
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Annabelle Marie Annabelle Marie is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

I am praying that you will take a second look at your faith. I left the Catholic church when I was in my teens. I did not know enough about it. Now-25 years later I have come back to my faith. I spent a lot of time in Protestant churches....not to say anything bad about them but they were not home. And having come back...I can not leave again. No where else will you find the Eucharist like here in the Catholic church.

I'll be praying for you!
  #7  
Old Apr 28, '10, 10:48 pm
Redman1986 Redman1986 is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

Well, if by "fully catechized" you mean "brainwashed to believe that there is only one true religion", then yes I was. 12 years of Catholic school. I think your response about me not being fully catechized truly shows how people of the Catholic faith try to invalidate the opinions of others through semantics.
  #8  
Old Apr 28, '10, 10:50 pm
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HyeDetroit HyeDetroit is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

You should take the opportunity to discover as much as you can about the Catholic Church before deciding to leave. You can compare and contrast different religions and denominations while still being a member of the Church. It can help you better understand people of different faiths. I think we should all be aware of what other people believe.

You're very fortunate to have grown up in the Church, many people don't have that experience.

You don't have to look anywhere for what you're searching for, it's right in front of you.
  #9  
Old Apr 28, '10, 10:55 pm
choy choy is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

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Originally Posted by Redman1986 View Post
Well, if by "fully catechized" you mean "brainwashed to believe that there is only one true religion", then yes I was. 12 years of Catholic school. I think your response about me not being fully catechized truly shows how people of the Catholic faith try to invalidate the opinions of others through semantics.
oh, there's no brainwashing there. i've went through kindergarten, prep, elementary, highschool (no middleschool in the Philippines), university and post graduate all in a Catholic school. and i can say, i was close to leaving the Church as well. but when i started asking questions and seeking answers, the answers brought me back to faith

i never believe faith is supposed to be blind. and i'm pretty sure the Catholic Church teaches the same thing. we don't believe because we are told to believe. thats why we have saints, they are testaments, with the lives they lived, with what they experienced, that God is real, that Jesus did indeed died for our sins and to this day He wants us to be with Him. and the facts that they are Catholics says a lot.
  #10  
Old Apr 28, '10, 10:56 pm
Redman1986 Redman1986 is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

I appreciate the posts and prayers, thanks.
  #11  
Old Apr 28, '10, 11:19 pm
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WetCatechumen WetCatechumen is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

Do not fear Hell. Fear God.

If you truly wish to be united to the truth, then I trust that God in his mercy will lead you back again to the Catholic faith.

I point you to the book of Romans, chapter 2:

Quote:
13 For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified. 14 For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. 15 They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them 16 on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus.
God has written the law on your heart. If you truly desire union with him, he will unite you to his church. Will it necessarily be visibly expressed? I should hope so, but it does not mean that it always is. Conservative Catholics will tell you that you are indeed going to Hell. I cannot lie; you commit a terrible sin by abandoning Christ and his Church. However, I pray that the evil that you do may be turned to good.

I am not saying, "All that you have to do not to go to Hell is be a good person". Far from it. I am merely saying that the Apostle Paul implied that those who did not hear the Gospel could still be saved by obedience to it. If, for some miraculous reason, you obey the Gospel having separated yourself from the Church and the Sacraments due to invincible ignorance, you may enter into His Kingdom.

I will pray for you. I exhort you, reconsider the matter, but do not fail to follow your conscience either.
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  #12  
Old Apr 28, '10, 11:41 pm
CMatt25 CMatt25 is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

Quote:
Originally Posted by Redman1986 View Post
I appreciate the posts and prayers, thanks.
Well yes but other than being told you may not have been catechized properly which seems to be a fairly common conclusion many jump to here when people question, have you gotten a definitive answer yet as to whether the Church says you can not be saved as it sounds Church documents say, since you have full knowledge of the Church's mission, beliefs etc, and are leaving the Catholic Church? Unless of course you repent leaving. I've been trying to get the same answer about Catholics who don't remain fully. God bless and peace.
  #13  
Old Apr 29, '10, 12:02 am
simspt simspt is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

Quote:
Originally Posted by Redman1986 View Post
I was raised Catholic, am now in my early 20's, and have recently made the decision to leave the Catholic church. I was curious about what the Catholic church itself would say about me leaving, and according to the Catechism, someone who has full knowledge of the church's mission, beliefs etc, and then leaves the Catholic church, will not achieve salvation. It sounds like I'm going to hell.

This seems kind of weird. I suppose I can understand how the Catholic church got so big if it has a "you go to hell if you leave" clause in the Catechism.

Thoughts?
The fact that your posting on a Catholic website leads me to hope that your decision has not been finalized. I am on the same road just going in the opposite direction. Seriously thinking about RCIA this year. Is it the Catholic Church that you have lost faith in or God?
  #14  
Old Apr 29, '10, 12:08 am
puzzleannie puzzleannie is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

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Originally Posted by Redman1986 View Post
I
This seems kind of weird. I suppose I can understand how the Catholic church got so big if it has a "you go to hell if you leave" clause in the Catechism.

Thoughts?
there is no such clause. If you know and understand that Jesus Christ founded the Catholic Church who exists as his Mystical Body on earth, through which he continues to teach, preach and sanctify as he did on earth, upon whom He has sent to Holy Spirit to protect and guide her in this sacred office, and you have been baptized, yet you freely reject the Church and reject her teaching and practice and moral guidance in that full knowledge, yes that objectively is the mortal sin of apostasy. Anyone who dies in a state of unrepentant mortal sin merits hell. That means, when at the moment of death you see God face to face in your personal judgement, and are given full knowledge the meaning and consequences of accepting either heaven or hell, you choose hell, that is where you will go (I am using the editorial "you" in this example). Nobody goes to hell for what they do or fail to do, but for stubbornly refusing to repent and ask for union with God in heaven.

the CCC reminds you that in leaving the Church you have rejected Christ who is her Head, not to mention rejected your fellow Catholics who are your brothers, and have rejected all his teachings and commandments which He transmits through her. Serious stuff, and unlikely to help you in your choice at the moment of death. I agree that you would not be posting here if you were not seeking a reason to return, and that reason is you will be welcome with open arms by your Lord and Savior and your family.

Quote:
Thanks for the answer. It made me think. But I've never thought the church would actually send you to hell. I know God is the only one who can send you there. Regardless, the church telling me that I'll go to hell if I leave seems to be a bit corrupt and suspicious. When I step outside of the box of Catholicism, and stop trying to defend my faith, I realize that no group should ever condemn its nonmembers.
as stated, this is a possibly deliberate mis-statement of Church teaching, there is no such statement in the catechism, and no the Church sends no one to hell. Either does God. Hell is a free will choice made at the moment of death and judgement, in full knowledge, granted at that time, and with full free will consent.

this is an apologetics question about the Catholic faith and you will find much fuller discussions if you search in that forum.
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  #15  
Old Apr 29, '10, 12:29 am
Santi2 Santi2 is offline
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Default Re: Going to hell for leaving the Catholic church

Quote:
Originally Posted by Redman1986 View Post
Well, if by "fully catechized" you mean "brainwashed to believe that there is only one true religion", then yes I was. 12 years of Catholic school. I think your response about me not being fully catechized truly shows how people of the Catholic faith try to invalidate the opinions of others through semantics.
I have a friend who was in a similar situation. Like you, she was educated all her life in a Catholic school and used the very same term "brainwash". There is a reason why we enquire whether you were "fully cathechized" and it is not for the purpose of invalidating your opinion but, as some here have already stated, a query as to whether you have studied enough or delved deeper into your Catholic faith.

Going back to my friend. You know how she managed to "work out the kinks" (her words, not mine)? She looked at from the perspective of the converts and the reverts to Catholicism. It was only then that she understood. Might looking and studying about our faith help you in that way? One must also mind that to be "fully catechised" is not one-off...it is a lifetime engagement.
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