Are Protestants Saved?

According to Catholic teaching, are Protestants saved (being saved, are to be saved, etc.)?:confused:

Salvation is past, present and future.
I was saved,
I am being saved,
I hope to be saved.

The easiest answer is this:

Protestant Christians are our fellow brother and sisters in Christ but they do not have the fullness of Christ. So, yes, they could be saved since they do not know the complete and total truth.

Start reading in the CCC around 812 and on.

I knew someone would say that…

That’s why I put the “(being saved, are to be saved, etc.)”

Do you always have to note this fact? It gets a bit tiring… :coffeeread:

It’s a very important distinction, one that I struggled with for years.
Evangelical theology discribes salvation as a ‘one time event’. Thus, salvation becomes a monument I look back on, instead of working toward. It creates a spiritual and psychological web that is difficult to untangle. Thats why you see endless threads on the apologetics side about ‘once saved always saved.’ Even after I came back to the Church, I had a hard time letting go of that very enticing philosophy. Because it is found nowhere in the Bible or in Church history. Not even the Protestant reformers taught it. It creates a distinction between those who are ‘saved’ and those who are not ‘saved’. A kind of elitist oneupmanship that I have something you don’t. Because I had the ‘experience’ of ‘being saved’, and you didn’t.
It might be tiring, but it is at the heart of what it means to be Catholic.

I guess so. Though, I object with the statement: “Not even the Protestant reformers taught it.” Remember Calvin? :stuck_out_tongue:

Once saved always saved certainly has its roots in Calvinism. He definately lit the match, but others fanned the flame and laid much of the groundwork for the modern concept of OSAS.

We don’t know. We cannot difinitively say who is in Heaven with certainty, barring a few rarities. We don’t know who will go to Heaven. Only God knows that.

The Church teaches that anyone, despite whether or not they are Catholic, who does the Will of God according to their conscience can be saved…now for those fallen away Catholics who have an informed conscience and who shared in the fullness of truth while being a Catholic…then became a protestant…for them to leave is a grave matter…I am not passing judgment, but I believe they would be the most difficult of all protestants to be saved…since they turned their back on Truth and The Sacraments, etc…with that said, there could be mitigating factors, mental illness, pressures, etc…who knows, that is why I said it is a grave matter and not a mortal sin, and would be difficult for their salvation and not impossible…for there is nothing impossible with God.

Hi! This might be of interest. I quoted this from the “An Unpublished Manuscript on Purgatory”. I have the booklet and it has the nihil obstat and imprimatur. :slight_smile:

"Are many Protestants saved?

By the mercy of God a certain number of Protestants are saved, but their Purgatory is for many long and rigorous. It is true they have not abused grace like many Catholics, but neither have they had the marvelous graces of the sacraments and the other helps of true religion, thus their expiation in Purgatory is prolonged. "

You can also read the manuscript online –


A more complete explanation from the Baltimore Catechism Lesson 11 (The Church):

Question 508:
Why did Christ found the Church?
Christ founded the Church to teach, govern, sanctify, and save all men.

Question 509:
Are all bound to belong to the Church?
All are bound to belong to the Church, and he who knows the Church to be the true Church and remains out of it cannot be saved.

Question 510:
Is it ever possible for one to be saved who does not know the Catholic Church to be the true Church?
It is possible for one to be saved who does not know the Catholic Church to be the true Church, provided that person:

Has been validly baptized;
Firmly believes the religion he professes and practices to be the true religion, and
Dies without the guilt of mortal sin on his soul.
Question 511:
Why do we say it is only possible for a person to be saved who does not know the Catholic Church to be the true Church?
We say it is only possible for a person to be saved who does not know the Catholic Church to be the true Church, because the necessary conditions are not often found, especially that of dying in a state of grace without making use of the Sacrament of Penance.

Question 512:
How are such persons said to belong to the Church?
Such persons are said to belong to the “soul of the church”; that is, they are really members of the Church without knowing it. Those who share in its Sacraments and worship are said to belong to the body or visible part of the Church.

Question 513:
Why must the true Church be visible?
The true Church must be visible because its founder, Jesus Christ, commanded us under pain of condemnation to hear the Church; and He could not in justice command us to hear a Church that could not be seen and known.

Well, we know that the canonized saints are in heaven. When the Church canonizes a saint, she is declaring that that person is in heaven. Furthermore, even before canonization, we are capable of having an inkling that a particular person is or may be in heaven: the whole reason people get causes for sainthood is because someone venerates them on account of their outstanding virtue, or at least has a pretty good idea that they might have practiced heroic virtue. So I disagree that we cannot say definitively who is in heaven, because in fact the Church has done just that on thousands of occasions.

What we don’t have is a canon of the damned. We do not know for certain that any particular individual is in hell. This goes even for Judas Iscariot, in spite of his exceedingly poor outlook, and in spite of the opinions of saints and theologians. If the Iscariot had in fact saved his soul, it is awfully hard to believe that Jesus would have said that it would have been better for him had he never been born; but even so, the Church has never pronounced one way or the other on his present whereabouts – or those of any other evil dead person.

Haha yeah, this is to no one’s avail. Might as well write “FirSt!!!1111!!01!”

John 9:40-41:
Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, “What? Are we blind too?” Jesus said, "If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains.
John 15:21-23:
They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the One who sent me. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin. Now, however, they have no excuse for their sin. He who hates me hates my Father as well.

Those who have not (for whatever reason) been revealed the great things of God, or have not seen God’s Holy Church, which ushers Christ in his fullest form, cannot be guilty of transgression (It’s the protestant that knows Catholicism is the fullest Gospel - the fullest, truest route to salvation - but denies it on some trivial ground, that is guilty then)

Hebrews 6:4-8:
It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age, if they fall away, to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace. Land that drinks in the rain often falling on it and that produces a crop useful to those for whom it is farmed receives the blessing of God. But land that produces thorns and thistles is worthless and is in danger of being cursed. In the end it will be burned.

Likewise, those who understand the Truth of God’s glory, power, and Church, but fall away, will be counted as guilty. Salvation, it seems, is largely contingent on the sowing that is done with what great or little knowledge we, as believers (or non-), have been revealed:

James 3:1:
Not many of you should presume to be teachers, my brothers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.

Little else, besides what has been cited already, will be known about the salvation of any one individual. Protestant or Catholic though, God will surely judge fairly.

God Bless, TC :slight_smile:

Furthermore, there have been Masses said for Protestants…and Adolph Hitler, with the hope that they are in Heaven.

St. John Vianny had even told one of the people waiting in line for confession that her husband, who had committed suicide, is in Heaven, because he was sorry for it.

Well, I for one entertain hopes of salvation for the souls of Protestants! I had some Masses offered for the soul of the Protestant mother of a friend of mine after she died.

Never had any Masses offered for Adolf Hitler, however…

I think it is most unlikely in normative sense that Protestants are saved. Those who are baptised and never commit a mortal sin-- e.g. infants, mentally retarted etc…, are saved but those who refuse to accept the WHOLE FAith can not be saved.

We are called to pray for everyone, because we don’t know where a person will be. Yes, we have no doubt that the saints are in heaven, but beyond that, we don’t know. Scriptures state that on that final day of judgment, people will say Lord I did this and that in your name and he will say I knew you not. So, even those we would expect to be in heaven, may not. So, we pray for them all. For we cannot see what is truly in the heart of another; that is a power God possesses not man.

This is refuted by the quotes from the catechism in a previous post. And thank God. If the Catholic Church had not reached out to me as a fellow Christian, I would not have come into the Church. I loved Jesus and His Word deeply long before I considered Catholicism. And I didn’t reject the Church and her teachings–I didn’t know them.

I like the answer the Church gives–it is gracious and relegates final judgement as the purview of God alone–Who is ever merciful and just.

They cannot be held to not having the FULL FAITH when they don’t know that they don’t have it.

Check out the CCC and the encyclicals.

Babies baptized with the proper formula and matter in protestant churches who die before the age of reason are saved, guaranteed.

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