Heaven or Limbo?


I was asked a question, if my four siblings that my mother miscarried went to Heaven or Limbo.
I will answer the question this way. When Almighty God ends this earthly journey of mine, I will most likely take a detour to purgatory for some time.
When He calls me home to Heaven, my siblings will be there to welcome me home.
Our God, is a God of love & mercy. If He can forgive a sinner like me, anything is possible.
Any child that died without being Baptized, whether being aborted, or miscarried, in my opinion will be welcomed home to Heaven, to be with our God for all eternity.
This is truly a mystery of our faith. In my heart, I believe this to be true.

God Bless, Tonyg


I can understand your desire to be with your siblings in heaven. But if you were to go to heaven and they weren’t there would you be upset? of course not, because its impossible to feel anything but complete joy in heaven.

The existence of Limbo in no way diminishes the perfect love of God.


I thank you for your candidness.


In reply to the question will I be upset if my siblings are not in Heaven:
Not only will my siblings be there, but also every child, that for reasons only known to God, was taken home before birth; and also the countless millions of the Holy Innocents whoes lives were terminated by abortion. Along with the babies killed by
King Herod, when he tried to kill our Lord Jesus Christ. tonyg


Then As Now

They placed You there out of fear, knowing fully the division it would bring,

They pierced You through, knowing to, Your power was greater than a king,

You came to call sinners and tell them the news, that there salvation was close at hand,

But then as know they claim these words are those of a foolish man,

The tree You were forced to carry, the tree where you hung and died,

The people spit upon You and thrust a lance into Your side,

Were the pretenses of things to come from that moment to this day,

When innocent ones are terminated in the very same way,

Then as now with a spear they bring silence to the lambs,

Then as now the truth is hidden so many won’t understand,

Then as now we are lied to by those who are in power,

But have no fear; Your love has brought us to this hour,

Change is coming very soon and indeed is already here,

Your people will be freed from all the crosses that they bear,

The reason You came into this world was to free us from within

To set us free so we would flee from and turn away from sin,

Then as now you give wisdom to the lowly and the humble,

They feel Your presence always; You help them when they stumble,

Then as now many are lost who place no trust in You,

Then as now Your love frees and Your love will see us through,



There are four possible versions of Limbo:

  1. as a fringe or upper level of Purgatory, often called the Limbo of the Fathers
    This is implied by Church teaching, but has not been formally defined, so it is subject to the development of doctrine

  2. as a fringe or upper level of Hell
    This has been taught by the Magisterium (but not infallibly as far as I know).
    This is where persons go who have died in a culpable state of original sin, but without other mortal sins.

  3. as a third separate place of perfect natural happiness
    This idea was condemned by Pope Pius VI in Auctorem Fidei, n. 26.

  4. as a fringe of Heaven, such that the souls there would be in Heaven, but without the Beatific Vision
    This idea is heretical since it contradicts an infallible papal teaching of Pope Benedict XII, On the Beatific Vision of God.

Prenatals and infants who die without a formal Baptism, in my theological opinion, go to Heaven by way of an upper level of Purgatory. But let me add that I don’t see any valid theological argument, speculative or otherwise, which can place prenatals or young children prior to the age of reason anywhere other than Heaven. Even if there is no explicit statement from the Magisterium saying that they go to Heaven, the Faith implicitly, yet with utter clarity, teaches that no other final destination is compatible with the infinite Mercy of God.

Ron Conte


Most people seeking or performing abortions are not trying to kill Jesus! Children killed by abortion are not martyrs or Holy Innocents. They are murder victims, who died without the possibility of Sacramental Baptism and with Original Sin on their souls.


Limbo is not and never has been a doctrine of the Church. It has only been theological speculation.


Pope Pius VI and the Council of Florence both taught that those who die with original sin on their souls go to a place in Hell, with lesser sufferings than those who died with a mortal sin of commission on their souls. This is sometimes called (a version of) limbo. Persons who die in a state of original sin go to Hell, according to the teaching of the Church.

The Church also teaches, in Evangelium Vitae (which is cited by the Catechism) that prenatals who die without a formal Baptism may go to Heaven. [But you are saying that they may not.] And though the theology as to how this occurs is speculative, the power and limitless of God’s Mercy is not a speculation.

So how can we reconcile these two teachings? Very simply. Prenatals and infants who die at that young age, and without a formal Baptism, must be given a non-formal Baptism by God. Therefore, they do not die with original sin on their souls.

Now if this non-formal Baptism cannot be categorized as a Baptism of blood or of desire, then there must be a third category of non-formal Baptism. The Church has never taught that non-formal Baptism is limited solely to blood and desire.

To hold otherwise is to hold that there is a contradiction in Church teaching.

Ron Conte


Limbo as a third final resting place is mere theological speculation, and this speculation has already been condemned by Pope Pius VI. Limbo as a fringe of Heaven is also erroneous theological speculation.

However the Church has taught a limbo of Hell (for those who die in original sin):

Auctorem Fidei - Pope Pius VI

The Punishment of Those Who Die with Original Sin Only
26. The doctrine which rejects as a Pelagian fable, that place of the lower regions (which the faithful generally designate by the name of the limbo of children) in which the souls of those departing with the sole guilt of original sin are punished with the punishment of the condemned, exclusive of the punishment of fire, just as if, by this very fact, that these who remove the punishment of fire introduced that middle place and state free of guilt and of punishment between the kingdom of God and eternal damnation, such as that about which the Pelagians idly talk,—false, rash, injurious to Catholic schools.

The Council of Florence also taught this doctrine:

“Also, the souls of those who have incurred no stain of sin whatsoever after baptism, as well as souls who after incurring the stain of sin have been cleansed whether in their bodies or outside their bodies, as was stated above, are straightaway received into heaven and clearly behold the triune God as he is, yet one person more perfectly than another according to the difference of their merits. But the souls of those who depart this life in actual mortal sin, or in original sin alone, go down straightaway to hell to be punished, but with unequal pains.” (Florence, Session 6, July 6th, 1439).

The above teachings are perhaps not infallible, but they are teachings of at least the ordinary Magisterium.

The Church has taught a limbo of the fathers. For example, this doctrine, in at least some form, is necessarily implied by the following teaching:

On the Beatific Vision of God
Constitution issued by Pope Benedict XII in 1336

By this Constitution which is to remain in force for ever, we, with apostolic authority, define the following: According to the general disposition of God, the souls of all the saints who departed from this world before the passion of our Lord Jesus Christ and also of the holy apostles, martyrs, confessors, virgins and other faithful who died after receiving the holy baptism of Christ- provided they were not in need of any purification when they died, or will not be in need of any when they die in the future, or else, if they then needed or will need some purification, after they have been purified after death-and again the souls of children who have been reborn by the same baptism of Christ or will be when baptism is conferred on them, if they die before attaining the use of free will: all these souls, immediately (mox) after death and, in the case of those in need of purification, after the purification mentioned above, since the ascension of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ into heaven, already before they take up their bodies again and before the general judgment, have been, are and will be with Christ in heaven, in the heavenly kingdom and paradise, joined to the company of the holy angels. Since the passion and death of the Lord Jesus Christ, these souls have seen and see the divine essense with an intuitive vision and even face to face, without the mediation of any creature by way of object of vision; rather the divine essence immediately manifests itself to them, plainly, clearly and openly, and in this vision they enjoy the divine essence . Moreover, by this vision and enjoyment the souls of those who have already died are truly blessed and have eternal life and rest. Also the souls of those who will die in the future will see the same divine essence and will enjoy it before the general judgment.

It cannot be said, generally and without qualification, that the Church has never taught limbo in any form.



Thank you Ron as I was going to mention that in response to thistle.

To explain a little further on the manner in which those teachings are be accepted or rejected we must understand the nature of theological speculation.

In common english the term has a bit of a shade of meaning that would cause us to think that it is either a “theological guess” or that it is a “hypothesis” that has been posited. However, in theology the term is much more specific and much more certain than what common English would provide.

Instead of a Hypothesis which must be tested or a guess which is similar it is a logical conclusion. In this case it is the logical conclusion of about four dogmas pertaining to the Sacrament of Baptism, Original Sin and the Nature of God. This investigation leads to the “truth” of the existence of what we call Limbo. Now, this truth must be both tested and verified. In testing over the centuries it has been found to be solid however in the verification is where we lack since we have as yet not found this to be a part of the Sacra Doctrina. Because of this it cannot ascend the ladder of certitude. However, the Church is so certain about it that it has come up in the magisterial documents that Ron has cited. But even there we must remember that in those cases it was primarily a rejection of one position in favor of another without creating “new” doctrine. However, it was the act of the Church saying in effect “this seems to be the correct answer at least more so than any other position at this time.”

However, we must remember that the idea of Limbo may very well be in the Sacra Doctrina since many if not all of the Early Church Fathers discussed this issue in both the East and the West. So, it is something that we must be careful to not outright deny but at the same time we can take the sufficiently easy course and “trust in the mercy of God” as the current Catechism states. But remember that even that statement leaves open the possibility to Limbo. I think that as people understand the nature of heaven and hell better the idea of Limbo will not leave as poor of a taste in peoples mouths as it has at some times.


We are obliged to believe and accept Church doctrine. We have never been obliged to believe and accept Limbo so it cannot have been a Church doctrine.


What we are obliged to believe as Catholics is the Catholic dogma that the souls of those dying with original sin only are punished for this state of sin in the next world. This dogma was taught by two ecumenical councils: Lyons II in 1274 and Florence in 1439 (old Denzinger numbers 464 and 693).

Please note, too, that Pope Pius XII taught on October 29, 1951, that baptism of desire is not possible for infants.

In the light of the above theological data, limbo–a state of unending, unmerited natural happiness–is a logical, solid deduction, and one necessary for the defense of the dogma of original sin, which is “an essential truth of the faith” (CCC 388).

To say that all unbaptized infants go to heaven is to rip up the entire fabric of Catholic doctrine. These are things that the Catholic Church cannot, and will not, do.

We should all be happy that God, in his love, mercy, and universal salvific will, gives everlasting natural happiness to human beings to whom he is not even obliged, in strict justice, to give existence. Limbo is an example of God’s infinite generosity.

It’s especially fitting to discuss limbo as we approach the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Without the dogma of original sin, the dogma concerning Mary’s sinless conception makes no sense at all.

Keep and spread the Faith.


I don’t think we can say for sure any individual goes to Hell or Heaven (barring a miraculous revelation) since we cannot pass judgment on anyone’s soul.

Yes, all who die in original sin, descend into Hell. But, for all we know, God grants a special grace to cleanse infants of original sin who have no opportunity for Baptism–(like He sanctified Jeremiah in the womb). Since He desires all men to be saved, mustn’t it follow that ALL men are offered the opportunity of salvation? Wouldn’t it be heretical to say God creates a being that will be excluded from heaven no matter what? Then again, He may not grant such a grace. Some saints have theorized about a vicarious Baptism by desire. I pray for the salvation of infants who die without Baptism–that God grant them the Baptismal grace they need.


I’m very, very sorry to hear about your Mother… My dad died 4 years ago, still have my mom, Thank God.


No, it would not be heretical, but quite Catholic, to say that God does create billions of human beings who will be excluded from heaven no matter what. Otherwise we’d have to say that Pope Innocent III was a heretic, for he taught in 1201 that the punishment for dying in original sin only is deprivation of the beatific vision (old Denzinger number 410).

And, in our own day, the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches us the following in section 1257:

"The Church does not know of any means other than Baptism that assures entry into eternal beatitude; this is why she takes care not to neglect the mission she has received from the Lord to see that all who can be baptized are ‘reborn of water and the Spirit.’"

True, *CCC *1261 speaks of a “hope” for “a way of salvation” for unbaptized infants. Still, limbo fulfills this hope, because it is a way of being saved from hell. Consequently, limbo can legitimately be viewed as a kind of salvation. It is this terminological shift that represents, in my opinion, the true doctrinal development with respect to limbo.

Keep and spread the Faith.


We are obliged to believe in Heaven, Puragtory and Hell. We are not and never have been obliged to believe in Limbo.
I do not believe in Limbo. The souls of unbaptised infants who die, for example, I leave to and trust in the mercy of God.


**St. Bernard denied that the so-called “Apostolici” of Purgatory and the utility of prayers for the departed. (**Serm. lxvi in Cantic., P. L. CLXXXIII, col. 1098) (cf. Cath. Encyclopedia Purgatory)
Also in the Middle Ages, the doctrine of Purgatory was rejected by the heresies Albigenses, Waldenses, and Hussitesand finally Protestants.

We are obligated to believe defined dogmas AND the UNIVERSAL Magesterium. Doctrines are not always defined for us to believe them, like before Pugatory was defined. Which was not proclaimed clearly until at Florence and defined in Trent.

People are so quick to say Limbo is not defined as a dogma but NEITHER has it been condemed.

Accuratly it is the opposite. The Church has upheld it and defended it. Not until the MIDDLE part of the 20th century was it popular to deny.

History and the greatest saints and theologians have defened it except, St Bernard, who as we see above was wrong also about Purgatory.

So according to the norms of Catholic teachings without a history it can not be held and the anti-Limbo crowd have NO history of their position


As another poster points out above, we are obliged to believe in the limbo of Hell, i.e. a place in Hell of lesser punishment for those who die in original sin only. This has not been infallibly defined, as far as I know, but it is the ordinary teaching of the Church.

Also, the limbo of the Fathers is necessarily implied by the infallible papal teaching of Pope Benedict XII on the Beatific Vision of God.

The idea of Limbo as a separate third place was condemned by Pius VI. So it is therefore not a logical and solid deduction. On what basis do you believe and teach an idea condemned as ‘false, rash, and erroneous’ by a Pope?

In my theological opinion, all unbapized prenatals and infants, who die prior to the age of reason, necessarily go to Heaven because they have committed no actual mortal sin. Those adults who die in an state of original sin have committed the actual mortal sin of omission of never having found sanctifying grace in their lives. Those who die prior to the age of reason cannot be guilty of an actual mortal sin, neither of commission nor of omission. They receive a mystical Baptism by virtue of the suffering of the loss of their life at an early age and by virtue of the suffering and death of Christ on the Cross, at least in the last moment of life.

We cannot hold that anyone except those who die in a state of actual mortal sin go to Hell because Pope Benedict XII taught (under papal infallibility in my view) the following:

“Moreover we define that according to the general disposition of God, the souls of those who die in actual mortal sin go down into hell immediately (mox) after death and there suffer the pain of hell.”

We can say that those who die prior to the age of reason necessarily go to Heaven, because they certainly have committed no actual mortal sin. I think you are right to say that it is heretical to claim that God sends persons to Hell with no opportunity for salvation at all, because this claim contradicts the Church’s teaching on the infinite mercy and power of God.

Here is my article explaining how those dying at a young age can receive a Baptism and go to Heaven:

It is correct to say that those who die in original sin only go to Hell, but with lesser punishment. And the Catechism is correct that only the Baptised go to Heaven. But a non-formal Baptism is certainly possible for those who die very young, so they would not be in a state of original sin. Limbo as a place of eternal natural happiness without the Beatific Vision has been condemned by the Church.

Limbo as a fringe of Hell, and Limbo as a fringe of Purgatory, are both Catholic doctrine. Limbo as a third separate place is a condemned idea. Limbo as a fringe of Heaven, lacking the Beatific Vision, is heretica.



Limbo is NOT a Church doctrine and never has been.
Show me in the CCC where it teaches we must believe in Limbo.
Bosom of Abraham for example is not Limbo.

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