Is there a difference between Protestant and Catholic views on Heaven?

  1. Does the Catholic Church have an ‘official’ stance on how joyous they think Heaven is?

  2. Do they think (unlike some Protestant vicars I’ve talked to) that our ‘loves and interests’ will be ressurected- that is, say, will Beethoven compose music? Will some be able to have films and statues of film characters? Painters have paintings etc?..But made new and Holy? After all, what were our interests made for- killing time?)

Or do all ‘churches’ think much the same on this? Or, indeed, do none have an official stance at all- after all, notions seem to differ from person to person (and the Bible doesn’t even mention ‘joy in Heaven’ but uses (arguably) symbolic accounts to describe anything ‘there’ at all)

Sadly, the Catholic Church has historically lagged far behind her Reformational sisters in teaching human eschatology.

What little remains is so abstract and philosophical, for the most part, as to provide almost no memorable substance, never mind comfort in the face of death.

I can count on my fingers the amount of preaching I have heard as a Catholic on Heaven, that was not totally nonmemorable. The Protestants do better, but not by all that much.


I’m a Protestant converted to Catholic in college. The protestant faith told of mansions in the sky where there would be no sorrow or tears or pain. They taught me that we wouldn’t have our body but be spirits of pure light and love and joy and that we would not be the “families” we are here on Earth because it wouldn’t be joyful etc. if we knew our loved ones had gone the other way.

Once I became a Catholic I didn’t notice it but you are right…very little is mentioned of heaven and so I think I just rely on my former teaching and image of heaven. The Pearly Gates and the book of Life etc.

I think we’ll be able to keep our neutral interest and hobbies even in Heaven, it will kind of like the way some like vintage toys and things even though we have more technology. I like vintage pictures and vintage toys and I love stuffed animals and cats. So I believe I’ll be able to keep up with those hobbies even in Heaven with pet cats and vintage earth things. :shrug:

But as far as teaching, I don’t think there is any formal teaching on what we will have in Heaven, but I see nothing wrong with carrying on with neutral hobbies and likes. Of course no unholy hobbies or likes will be there. I like The Walking Dead but I don’t think I’ll have any posters or memorabilia of that in Heaven. ;)Stuffed animals, yes, Walking Dead, no.

Hmmmm… What need for mansions, if no bodies???



Walking Dead? Is that a zombie flick, or a metal band?

There **may **be mementos of our morbid interests such as this in Heaven, but, if so, only as a reminder of what was overcome!


Yeah I thought about that too, and it may sound sad, but I believe we won’t remember those who did not make it to Heaven, out of mercy, I think God will allow us to forget them because we would be sad if we knew our loved ones were dead and we didn’t see them in Heaven then we would know they were in Hell and that would make us too sad especially if it’s your son or daughter of a parent. So it would be like how it is with small children under 4yrs old, and how they forget people in their life if they leave them when they are under 4yrs old. Most don’t remember them even if it’s a parent whom they loved dearly. I think that’s how we’ll be with loved ones who don’t make it to Heaven.

LOL The TV series, The Walking Dead, I love that show! :smiley:

As a boy, more than 65 years ago, Irish Nuns taught me that being in the presence of G*d Almighty and the sight of Him was beyond any human description and so awesome, that nothing else mattered in Heaven.

Both believe that heaven is a joyous place where pain/suffering will not exist.

In all my wanderings in the Protestant community, I’ve never run into a church that an “official stance” on heaven. (Nor have I found one on the many church websites I’ve looked at over the years…) As for as I know, there’s not an “official stance” in Catholic church regarding heaven. (I’m a convert to Catholicism).

Is Catholic heaven different than Protestant heaven? Well, we believe that Mary and the Saints are in heaven praying for us today and we can directly ask for their intervention at any time. So, that’s an obvious difference between us and Protestants.

Most of the differences are about who and how people get to heaven, but not really heaven itself.

Still, there’s really no clear answer to what heaven is like, outside of people who have written about their near-death experiences or other supernatural encounters.

It’s not like people die with iphones attached to their bodies specifically for the purpose of taking pictures and videos to send for us, mere mortals, to view. :doh2:

A lot of it really is open to interpretation by our priests/scholars/theologians/average people.

I tend to think that our small human minds can’t begin to really comprehend how big and amazing heaven is. The only limits to heaven are the ones that humans put on it.

I would think being in the presence of God is enough everything else you forget about with that said the miracles that God has performed on behalf of intercessory prays of the Saints have often times been linked to something the Saint did in their earthly lives for instance Saint Gianna Beretta Molla died in the 1961 after she refused to both abort her child and refused to have a hysterectomy which would have resulted in the unintended death of the baby because she had a Fibroma while she was pregnant with her third child and she chose to only remove the Fibroma to save her child’s life and she was clear that it might come down to saving one or the other and she insisted the baby be saved. Both miracles attributed to Gianna’s intercession were for mothers having difficult pregnancies.

The first miracle was the medically unexplainable cure in 1977 of a woman in Brazil who developed a severe vaginal abcess following the birth of a stillborn infant. The infection spread quickly and was life threatening. The hospital where the woman was being treated had been founded by St. Gianna’s brother, Father Alberto Beretta, who was a missionary priest. One of the nurses caring for this sick woman was a nun named Sister Bernardina, and she prayed to St. Gianna asking her to intercede so that the woman’s pain would be relieved and she would be spared a difficult transport to another hospital for surgery. Two other nurses joined Sister Bernardina in her prayer, and immediately, the woman was healed.

The second and the official miracle used for Canonization. occurred also in Brazil, when a baby was born healthy despite the rupture of the amnionic fluid and its failure to reaccumulate at 16 weeks gestation. The mother of this child was told when her “water broke” at 16 weeks that there was no possibility of a successful delivery of a viable infant and that she should have an abortion to save her own life. The woman and her husband refused and with the guidance of the local Diocesan Bishop who had celebrated their wedding, they all prayed to St. Gianna asking for protection of the woman from infection and for a miracle for the baby’s survival. To the amazement of her treating physician, the woman’s pregnancy continued and the baby continued to develop despite the absence of amnionic fluid. The baby was successfully delivered on May 31, 2000 and was named “Gianna Maria”. Like Gianna, Elisabeth Comparini who Gianna interceded for was pregnant with her third child.

Sooooooo that leads me to believe you very much do not forget your earthly life and can perfectly help people now because you can petition God directly like in the Bible when the angel Raphael petitioned God on behalf of Tobit.

aaaaahhhh, Gnosticism!!! :eek:

  1. Those who die in God’s grace and friendship and are perfectly purified live for ever with Christ. They are like God for ever, for they “see him as he is,” face to face. (CCC 1023)
    This mystery of blessed communion with God and all who are in Christ is beyond all understanding and description. Scripture speaks of it in images: life, light, peace, wedding feast, wine of the kingdom, the Father’s house, the heavenly Jerusalem, paradise: “no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him.” (CCC1027)
    Sacred Scripture calls this mysterious renewal, which will transform humanity and the world, “new heavens and a new earth.” It will be the definitive realization of God’s plan to bring under a single head “all things in [Christ], things in heaven and things on earth.” (CCC 1043)
    In this new universe, the heavenly Jerusalem, God will have his dwelling among men. “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying nor pain any more, for the former things have passed away.” (CCC 1044)
  2. I don’t know but my dad is hoping for Mozart. I just want to listen to the angels.

The health & wealth gospel within protestantism might at times stray somewhat into the Islamic view of Heaven, short of the giant harems, but generally speaking protestant conceptions of Heaven are the same as Catholic ones. Also it’s often unspoken whether Heaven is spiritual or also bodily, versus the Catholic understanding that matter matters.

I believe - at least in theory - that Catholic spirituality provides a richer experiential context of Heaven because of the intimate communion with the saints. The Church is a body that transcends time and place, where the heavens and our world are linked together by mutual prayer, and so in thanksgiving and petitions we can be constantly reminded of the essence of Heaven, which is community existing in perfect charity, like the Trinity itself. Since a minority of protestantism has much of a focus on the idea of the communion of saints, and instead adopts a strict closed-circuit link with God, so to speak, I don’t think this provides a person with as much reminder.

Well, the iPhone attached to the dead body would do no good, seeing as how “flesh and blood” cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven. (1Co 15).

Having images of the other life would help, though, as we are currently only left with “spiritual” and philosophical ideas, which do no human good.


Well the Simpsons famously tackled this issue… lol
(Sorry about the ad, but it’s the only link I could find with the video clip.)

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