If one leaves the faith...in a state of mortal sin...then what?


If one leaves the Catholic faith, in a state of mortal sin…say, becomes Methodist…or just starts attending another church, what happens to his/her soul? I know of people who have sinned…someone very recently in my life who was baptised and received the Sacraments of Holy Communion and Confirmation in the RCC when she was a kid…has (to the best of my knowledge) not gone to Confession in years…what happens to her soul, if she chooses to leave the faith…and start practicing as a Methodist?:confused:

Our salvation is up to God, of course…What I’m trying to say, is if someone changes their faith…stops believing in the Catholic faith altogether while he/she is in mortal sin…would that in and of itself be a sin? (resigning from the faith, so to speak, if you were raised, and baptised in the faith?)


In my experience, I have never seen a well Cathecized, devout, practicing Catholic simply leave the Church.

They leave because they did not know what they had.

I would pray for them, love them, know that God wants them back in the Church and trust them to HIS mercy - and let the love and peace and joy in your life be the light that guides them back. Continue to ask them WHY? and get the answers for the “reasons” or doubts they have.


excellent points…kage.
I know why. She told me that the church she attended, had a priest that she disliked. I said…I wouldn’t throw away the faith, over one person. She said, I know…but her now ex boyfriend, introduced her to the Methodist faith, since he was not Catholic, and they attended a few times together. I am thrilled that she is bringing her life back to Christ…so, maybe one day at a time.:shrug:

But…if one leaves the RCC–and stops believing–for the sake of discussion–will they need to go to Confession, to have their sins forgiven (mortal) even though they now attend an entirely different church?:confused:


One can only hope and pray that they do not die in that state.


Non Catholics can commit mortal sins…PERIOD.

Grave Matter

Full Knowledge

Deliberate intent

It has also been debated here in CAF that people can be guilty of Mortal sin and not know it. Again the above criteria must be met.

Artificial birth controll comes to mind. ITs bad…one knows its bad…but they do it anyway… PERIOD.



I think it would be very unusual for a Catholic to become a Methodist. Its invariably the other way round. I was a Methodist and became a Catholic and I know other Methodists who have also become Catholics.


but isn’t she still Catholic? Whether she ‘leaves’ and goes to the Methodists. Or if she just leaves and goes to no other place. She would still have to reconcile.


I’m one.

[quote=ElizabethPH]but isn’t she still Catholic? Whether she ‘leaves’ and goes to the Methodists. Or if she just leaves and goes to no other place. She would still have to reconcile.

Yes. You have to formally defect – including filing forms with the bishop – to get out completely.


yes yse! This is my question…would we all still remain Catholic, if we were baptised Catholic…but strayed to another church? (for worshipping, etc)


As Mirdath indicated above, you would remain Catholic, unless you"formally" renounce the faith.


If a Catholic leaves the church they committ mortal sin.

If they don’t confess that sin to a Catholic priest or failing that if they are not 100% fully contrite for that mortal sin and then they die–Yes they do go to Hell.


I have 3 friends who have left the Church. All 3 are for emotional reasons. Unfortunately, logic and facts won’t get them back - only the Holy Spirit can change their hearts.

I was a cradle Catholic - became an atheist for 25 years. What started out emotional morphed into intellectual stances. I could counter every argument put forth by my friends, but the anger, hurt, - whatever - remains. I cannot heal that. All I can do is pray, and try to be a good Catholic witness.


[quote=Sheeniac]but the anger, hurt, - whatever - remains.


[quote=Sheeniac]I cannot heal that.


[quote=Sheeniac]All I can do is pray,


[quote=Sheeniac]and try to be a good Catholic witness.



It is my understanding of what I have learned from life, the Holy Scriptures, that God is worshiped in spirit only; period.

The only way to access God is by spirit.

When you pray, your spirit prays.

The only physical thing involved is that we are in a body of flesh.

Now, regardless of what religious affiliation one is, God is the same to us all.

But, our view of God is limited to how we limit His love toward us.

For example, Catholics limit God to members of the Catholic church as being the true way.

While many protestants (Non-Catholics) limit God to their understanding and structured beliefs.

But God is none of them, for God is not limited to any of His creatures regardless of who or what they believe.

God reckoned all as lost so that He could also save all.

If you left the Catholic Church, or any church for that matter, God would still be the same to you, limited only by what you might believe He is not.

The choice to worship as a Catholic is just as honorable as a protestant, because what worships God is not the institution, but by the spirit of the individual believer.

When Jesus was here He said, the day will come where mankind will worship God in spirit and in truth, giving to believe that there need not be a particular place to worship or a particular belief structure.

If, I love a Catholic, I should love a protestant , a Jew, a Buddhist etc. the same way equally, for all are the covered by the blood of Jesus.

To make distinctions is to divide the body of Christ.

So above all, be a believer first, then, choose your religious affiliation.



Wow…you guys are so insightful!

I wonder this…here’s my next question:

One of my brotherinlaws married a Lutheran woman…completely left the faith…not sure if he ‘renounced’ it, exactly…but he was confirmed in the Lutheran faith/church, and is now becoming an elder. (This is after like 20 yrs of attending the Lutheran church) So…would he be in mortal sin are u saying because he left the RCC??


Apostasy is a mortal sin. [leaving the Church].

But three things need to happen for sin to be mortal:

Serious matter
Knowledge or firm belief that the act is seriously worng prior to committing the act
Full consent of the will.

I don’t know if there is any Catholic that doesnt’ know that leaving the Church is serious matter.


God is the same towards a Lutheran as to a Catholic. What the difference is, is how a Catholic looks at a Lutheran and visa- versa.

God looks at the heart of the individual whether Catholic or Lutheran.

Which of the two is right with God, is up to the individuals relationship with God.

Lets say for example that marooned on an island are three men.
A good Catholic, a good Muslim and a good protestant.

The situation is hopeless, and there’s no chance of being rescued.
The Catholic has no church to worship in, the Muslim no mosque , and the protestant needs no building to worship in.

After they die, what is their fate?
All three were good worshipers in their own beliefs, so whose right and whose not right?

How does God see them?

These are questions worthy of consideration, for the answer is an answer of a spiritually mature individual, who has come to know and see how God sees and not as man sees.



Did you fill out the forms?


I lean towards your post here…but, I also know that if one is baptized Catholic, and chooses to leave the faith (not just worship elsewhere once in a blue moon) but really leaves and embraces another set of rules, if you will…that the RCC is pretty direct about that…but, again…I look at your post, and nod my head along with it.:shrug:


No. Why should I be the one going to the effort? :smiley:

They can send em in an SASE if they like though :slight_smile:

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