Is the Catholic Church the only way to be saved?


#1

Is the Catholic Church the only way to be saved? Can one be saved if they are eastern orthodox christian or baptist? Of course if they haven’t heard of Catholicism or they do not have enough knowledge of it, but in general. The sacraments are neccessary for salvation and only a catholic priest can administer them, right?


#2

short confusing answers:

Question 1: Yes.
Question 2: Yes.
Question 3. Yes/No.

All who are saved are saved because of the Catholic Church, whether they visibly belong to it or not, whether they know it or not. Also, Orthodox Priests can validly confect the Eucharist, if by sacrament, that’s what you’re referring to. The sacrament of Baptism can be administered by anyone with the proper intent, even an atheist, theoretically.


#3

I’d say if by the ‘Catholic Church’ you mean formal membership of the Church, then no but it’s by far the most likely way to be saved!


#4

The catholic church has no saving power, only Jesus Christ and baptisim is not neccessary for salvation.


#5

No one is saved except through Jesus. The mystical body of Christ is made manifest throught the Catholic Church. He is one with the Catholic Church.

If you find yourself in heaven you will be a member of the Catholic Church.


#6

If a person, through invincible ignorance, does not know that the Catholic Church is the Church founded by Christ, and that the Sacraments are physical signs instituted by Christ to give us the grace for our salvation, then they CAN be saved. Notice, I did NOT say they WILL be saved, but it is possible for them to be saved. However, if a person DOES know that the Catholic Church is the Church founded by Christ, and that the Sacraments give us grace, and they REFUSE to join the Church, then they cannot be saved.


#7

No. It doesn’t work like that.

Can one be saved if they are eastern orthodox christian or baptist?

Of course.

Of course if they haven’t heard of Catholicism or they do not have enough knowledge of it, but in general. The sacraments are neccessary for salvation and only a catholic priest can administer them, right?

The Sacraments certainly help, but its not very Catholic to exclude anyone from heaven!


#8

Without casting presumptous doubt on the power of God who as I Tim 2:4 will have all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth, I must emphasise what I believe in the words of Fr. Schouppe SJ "The Church is the great Christian society founded by Jesus Christ. He established it conformably to those solemn words which He addressed to St. Peter : Thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against her.
The Church consists of the Pope, of the Bishops, of the priests, and of all the faithful who are their subjects.

  1. We say, in the Creed, the Holy Church, because she is indeed holy and immaculate, (1) in her origin, being the work of God the Son; (2) in her constitutive elements that is to say, in her hierarchical power, her doctrine, her end, which is the salvation of souls, in her means to that end, which are instruction, the sacraments, and works of mercy.
    As regards the body of the Church, it is composed of saints and sinners. Its Head, Jesus Christ, is holy; but its members, who are those believing in the Church, are not all holy. Nevertheless they all aspire to be sanctified; that is, to triumph over sin, to live and die in sanctifying grace.
    We must believe the entire Christian doctrine; that is to say, all that the Catholic Church believes and teaches. It is not, then, true (1) that it is sufficient to believe what one pleases of Catholic teachings; or (2) that there is more than one true faith; and (3) that each one can be saved in his belief and sect. For there is but one God, but one Jesus Christ, who preached but one Gospel, and established but one Church. There shall be, says He, one fold and one shepherd; and again: And if he will not hear the Church, let him be to thee as the heathen and the publican."
    Having said that it must be emphasised that catholics are not provided with any privilege other than the true faith and indeed many are dammed by their own fault.

#9

What about ‘Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus’?

If everyone can be saved, what is the point of being Catholic?


#10

All who are saved are saved because of what Jesus Christ did on the cross.


#11

That is what many non-Christians must ask themselves all the time.

Is it merely because the odds are better?


#12

I have never meant a single non-Catholic Christian who ever believed that the Roman Catholic Church was founded by Christ, and I have met many.

Actually, I have never met anyone who remained a non-Catholic who believed the same.

I guess we are all in the clear at least on this point.


#13

Not quiet. It means that the Church is the means established by Christ through which mankind may be saved. The Great Commision belongs to the Church. The Church has the Keys. The Church is the Body and Bride of Christ. This is the normative method for Salvation.

Just to clarify The Church is the medium, it is love of God made manifest in Christ Jesus which saves.

However, God is still God and He is the Auther of Salvation. As such He has every right and power to save whomever He wishes whenever He wishes. So its not so much that your "odds are better " in the Church its more that your odds plummit when you are outside of it.


#14

How do you know?

I thought you just said God “has every right and power to save whomever He wishes whenever He wishes.”

Also, no one is saved outside the Church, so there are no odds that you will be saved if you are outside the Church.

That being the RC teaching on the topic, what Church are you talking about?


#15

Off topic posts have been pruned from this thread.
Please stay on topic.
MF


#16

Because the Catholic Church is the Church established by Christ that would go to reason. As to being able to be saved outside of it we simply acknowledge God’s ability to do as He pleases with His own gifts. Perhaps I’m not seeing where that this confusing?


#17

It is RC dogma that no one is saved outside the Church.

You are saying that God does save those outside of the Church.

What Church are you talking about?


#18

Let me try to explain it this way.

Fornication is a grave sin yet we should acknowledge that people who commit this sin and don’t confess it may be saved.

Now you might ask: If those who commit the sin of fornication can be saved, what is the point of staying chaste?

Ignoring the numerous reasons for chastity we must point out to the fact that at times valid situations that lower or even erase our guild. Fortification is a mortal sin, one that completely cuts us from the Grace of God. Yet mortal sin can’t be committed out of ignorance or accidentally. It always required full knowledge and complete consent. Thus some may escape the fires of hell if they can claim to be really ignorant to it. Is that likely? Probably not. Is that possible? I think so.

I think you can say that the two situations we are discussing are very similar. If you’re to be guilty of rejecting the Church and thus the Christ you can’t be fully ignorant of your actions. How many people can claim to be fully ignorant of the Church? I don’t know, not that many perhaps. Can they be totally ignorant? I think so.

So if you’re thinking along the lines ‘I don’t need to be catholic because I may be saved anyways’ you’re most likely already digging your grave.


#19

Those non-Catholic Christians who are properly baptized can theoretically be saved. They, even thought they might not realize it , are baptized into the Church, thought through their rejection of Her they are imperfectly and invisibly united with Her.

Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus is an infallible truth but it must be properly understood.

Let me try to explain it this way.

Fornication is a grave sin yet we should acknowledge that people who commit this sin and don’t confess it may theoretically be saved.

Now you might ask: If those who commit the sin of fornication can be saved, what is the point of staying chaste?

Ignoring the numerous reasons for chastity we must point out to the fact that at times valid situations that lower or even erase our guild exist. Fortification is a mortal sin, one that completely cuts us from the Grace of God. Yet mortal sin can’t be committed out of ignorance or accidentally. It always required full knowledge and complete consent. Thus some may escape the fires of hell if they can claim to be really ignorant to it. Is that likely? Probably not. Is that possible? I think so.

I think you can say that the two situations we are discussing are similar. If you’re to be guilty of rejecting the Church and thus the Christ you can’t be fully ignorant of your actions. How many people can claim to be fully ignorant of the Truth, without rejecting their possibility to discover it when God gives them the chance? I don’t know. Can this happen though? I think so.

So if someone is thinking along the lines ‘I don’t need to be catholic because I may be saved anyways’ he is most likely already digging himself a deep grave.


#20

The following quotes from the Catechism of the Catholic Church put this teaching in context:

**“Outside the Church there is no salvation”

** 846 How are we to understand this affirmation, often repeated by the Church Fathers? Re-formulated positively, it means that all salvation comes from Christ the Head through the Church which is his Body:
Basing itself on Scripture and Tradition, the Council teaches that the Church, a pilgrim now on earth, is necessary for salvation: the one Christ is the mediator and the way of salvation; he is present to us in his body which is the Church. He himself explicitly asserted the necessity of faith and Baptism, and thereby affirmed at the same time the necessity of the Church which men enter through Baptism as through a door. Hence they could not be saved who, knowing that the Catholic Church was founded as necessary by God through Christ, would refuse either to enter it or to remain in it.
847 This affirmation is not aimed at those who, through no fault of their own, do not know Christ and his Church:
Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or his Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do his will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience - those too may achieve eternal salvation.
848 “Although in ways known to himself God can lead those who, through no fault of their own, are ignorant of the Gospel, to that faith without which it is impossible to please him, the Church still has the obligation and also the sacred right to evangelize all men.”

Source: Catechism of the Catholic Church


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