Do Non-Catholic Christians go to Heaven too?

We can all agree that my decision to convert from Methodist to Catholicism is great, since I can participate in the sacrifice of the Mass and receive Jesus in the Eucharist. Okay that’s good. But then it dawned on me: will my family come to salvation with me? Are my dead grandparents who stayed Protestant their entire lives in Heaven?

Jesus says that if one does not eat his body or drink his blood then they have no life within them. But, I certainly don’t think that God would doom all non-Catholic Christians to hell!

They certainly will not be left out. Although we can’t know who. We don’t know what they knew or what was in their hearts, pray for them and know that God is merciful.

Anyone can go to heaven . . . even non-Christians. It’s just that salvation comes through Jesus. The Catholic Church is the fullness of truth. The Methodist church certainly has elements of the truth. There is a good article on CA in regards to this. I can’t remember where I found it, but search around for it on CA. It has a very good explanation.

If its as if I have heard that St Peter is at the pearly gates checking everone who he may try to enter. He may say that only through the Catholic Church one is saved.:wink:

Jesus says that if one does not eat his body or drink his blood then they have no life within them.\quote]
Hi,
I was raised Roman Catholic and was taught by the nuns. I was always taught that only Catholics went to heaven. It is some where in the CCC that Jesus came to save ALL people whatever their religion. But I have a problem with this verse also where Jesus says that unless you eat my body and drink my blood you will not have eternal life in you. Only the Catholic Church offers the real body and blood of Jesus in Holy Communion. Is this a contradiction? Can someone help me understand how people who do not believe in the Real Presence get to heaven when Jesus says that we need to believe in the Real Presence to get to heaven?

I hope this made sense to some one out there.
JeanneH

yes

john 3:16
pretty clear

The short answer is that we don’t know. We don’t know if we’ll go to Heaven. We can have some assurance, but not an absolute like many Protestants will tout.

We still have a duty to tell all men the Truth of Christ’s Church, this includes Protestants. Many times they will get upset and tell us to just evangelize non-Christians, but if we believe and know to have the entire truth and fail to share it, what would Our Lord and Saviour say on the Last Day?

Al-Masih Qam!
Andrew

To those who just give the out of hand “sure! Protestants will go to heaven!” answer … not so fast …

To say that is to deny the need of the Sacraments, specifically the Sacrament of Reconciliation and the Eucharist. Most, if not all, Protestant sects deny both of these … These were unquestioned as part of the Christian faith until the revisionists came along and invented Protestantism. Leave to the good ole Baltimore Catechism to set us straight:

121. Q. Are all bound to belong to the Church?
A. 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.

Anyone who knows the Catholic religion to be the true religion and will not embrace it cannot enter into Heaven. If one not a Catholic doubts whether the church to which he belongs is the true Church, he must settle his doubt, seek the true Church, and enter it; for if he continues to live in doubt, he becomes like the one who knows the true Church and is deterred by worldly considerations from entering it.

In like manner one who, doubting, fears to examine the religion he professes lest he should discover its falsity and be convinced of the truth of the Catholic faith, cannot be saved.

Suppose, however, that there is a non-Catholic who firmly believes that the church to which he belongs is the true Church, and who has never – even in the past – had the slightest doubt of that fact – what will become of him?

If he was validly baptized and never committed a mortal sin, he will be saved; because, believing himself a member of the true Church, he was doing all he could to serve God according to his knowledge and the dictates of his conscience. But if ever he committed a mortal sin, his salvation would be very much more difficult. A mortal sin once committed remains on the soul till it is forgiven. Now, how could his mortal sin be forgiven? Not in the Sacrament of Penance, for the Protestant does not go to confession; and if he does, his minister – not being a true priest – has no power to forgive sins. Does he know that without confession it requires an act of perfect contrition to blot out mortal sin, and can he easily make such an act? What we call contrition is often only imperfect contrition – that is, sorrow for our sins because we fear their punishment in Hell or dread the loss of Heaven. If a Catholic – with all the instruction he has received about how to make an act of perfect contrition and all the practice he has had in making such acts – might find it difficult to make an act of perfect contrition after having committed a mortal sin, how much difficulty will not a Protestant have in making an act of perfect contrition, who does not know about this requirement and who has not been taught to make continued acts of perfect contrition all his life. It is to be feared either he would not know of this necessary means of regaining God’s friendship, or he would be unable to elicit the necessary act of perfect contrition, and thus the mortal sin would remain upon his soul and he would die an enemy of God.

If, then, we found a Protestant who never committed a mortal sin after Baptism, and who never had the slightest doubt about the truth of his religion, that person would be saved; because, being baptized, he is a member of the Church, and being free from mortal sin he is a friend of God and could not in justice be condemned to Hell. Such a person would attend Mass and receive the Sacraments if he knew the Catholic Church to be the only true Church.

I am giving you an example, however, that is rarely found, except in the case of infants or very small children baptized in Protestant sects. All infants rightly baptized by anyone are really children of the Church, no matter what religion their parents may profess. Indeed, all persons who are baptized are children of the Church; but those among them who deny its teaching, reject its Sacraments, and refuse to submit to its lawful pastors, are rebellious children known as heretics.

I said I gave you an example that can scarcely be found, namely, of a person not a Catholic, who really never doubted the truth of his religion, and who, moreover, never committed during his whole life a mortal sin. There are so few such persons that we can practically say for all those who are not visibly members of the Catholic Church, believing its doctrines, receiving its Sacraments, and being governed by its visible head, our Holy Father, the Pope, salvation is an extremely difficult matter.

I do not speak here of pagans who have never heard of Our Lord or His holy religion, but of those outside the Church who claim to be good Christians without being members of the Catholic Church.

Ok, here’s the article I spoke of in my earlier post . . . I think this answers it.

catholic.com/thisrock/2004/0403sbs.asp

Acts 16 ;31 Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.

that’s it !, nothing more , nothing less

Yeah…that’s it…!!! Then just why was the rest of scripture AND Tradition needed??? Cherry picking one verse does nothing helpful for the OP.
Yes, it is possible for non Catholics to be saved…it is by Christ through His Church that ALL are saved though…

Catholics believe that Bible verse 100%. Because the Catholic Church teaches the meaning of Scripture with the context of the entire Bible in mind, Catholics also believe the rest of the Bible, including:

James 2:24 A person is justified by works and not by faith alone.

James 2:26 …so also faith without works is dead.

Matthew 4:17 Jesus says to “repent”

Matthew 19:16-17 Jesus says that if we wish to enter life, keep the commandments

1 Cor 13:1-3 “if I have all faith so as to move mountains but do not have love, I am nothing”

The Catholic Church teaches that we are saved by grace and that in order for works to have any supernatural value, they must be performed in the grace of God. Grace is given freely by God, Catholics do not believe that they have to “work” for it.

I have relatives who are Baptist, and I rejoice in the common truths we share as Christians.

I hope this helps explain a little bit of what we Catholics believe and why.

Incidentally, my Catholic grandfather had a Massey-Harris.:slight_smile:

I guess I should respond to the original post.

In the Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraph 169 states:

"Salvation comes from God alone; but because we receive the life of faith through the Church, she is our mother: “We believe the Church as the mother of our new birth, and not in the Church as if she were the author of our salvation.” (italic emphasis is as appears in the catechism)

I am thinking that there should be another reference to this subject in the catechism, but I couldn’t find it right offhand. Does someone else know where this is addressed in the catechism?

My opinion is that any Catholic who thinks that non-Catholic Christians cannot go to heaven does not understand, or is not abiding by, the teachings of the Catholic Church.

1jo 5:10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in him: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he hath not believed in the witness that God hath borne concerning his Son.
1jo 5:11 And the witness is this, that God gave unto us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
1jo 5:12 He that hath the Son hath the life; he that hath not the Son of God hath not the life.
1jo 5:13 These things have I written unto you, that ye may know that ye have eternal life, [even] unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God.

I think John says it pretty plain here.

If we all face judgement at the end of our lives or end of the world whatever you may. I, in no way see heaven being reserved for only Catholics. Too many deserving people would be left out Christian or not Christian. I believe its a matter of the kind of life you live.

If some reason it was a Catholics only shindig I think I just might chill on the outside of heaven with everyone else ((and shake my fist at elitists lol))

All Christians can go to Heaven. Not all get there, though. Take care of your soul.

It is not about what you think is pretty clear or what I think is pretty clear, it is about what the Church teaches. The Church is the authority on Scripture. The Church is the pillar and bullwork of the turth.

1TM 3:15 if I am delayed, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and bullwork of the truth.

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