Michael Jackson and Heaven...

A friend of mine asked me if Michael Jackson is in heaven. He had watched the memorial on Tuesday and was a little disturbed that mostly everyone who was honoring Michael Jackson was saying that he is in heaven already. What does the Church teach on matters of a loved one dying and where their soul goes. How can I help him understand what he asked me? Because that is a very good question and I want to know also. :slight_smile:

Rest in Peace Michael Jackson


If a person is a Catholic and dies in a state of grace they are saved. They may go straight to Heaven but more likely Pugatory first. If they die in a state of mortal sin they go to Hell.
Only God knows who is saved and who is not.

Non-Catholic Christians who reject Christ’s Church (the Catholic Church) will not be saved.

People who do not know Christ and his Church but live a life in accordance with Christ’s teachings may be saved (invincible ignorance).

People who know about Christ and his Church and desire more but are denied the opportunity to pursue such a desire may be saved (baptism of desire).

However, Michael Jackson was not a Christian, and dabbled in several false religions.

My personal opinion is that he is not saved.

Fans and admirers will always insist their heroes go to heaven. That’s their biased opinion.

WHile we’re told not to judge, if Church teaching on judgment is anything to go by, I don’t think Michael Jackson is in heaven, and that’s being polite, regardless of what his admirer’s might think.

As a matter of fact, I don’t think many Westerners get to heaven these days. My old Protestant pastor’s comment on his own people, Australians, was “I think God’s sick and tired of condeming them. I think He might give us a revival to stop it.”

Until the Church officially declares a dead person “blessed,” we should assume that they are in Purgatory and we should pray for the repose of their soul, have Masses said for them, gain indulgences for them, give alms in their name, etc., to ease their suffering and hasten them on their journey to Heaven. If the person is not in Purgatory but in Hell or already in Heaven and so cannot benefit from those things, God will certainly allow those things to benefit some other soul in Purgatory.

Perfect answer.
It bothers me when I hear Catholics sounding like evangelicals in terms of who is and who is not in Heaven or Hell. That’s God’s business, not ours.
Pray for their soul. That’s all the Christian can do.

Only one of the above statements is correct.
One is a personal opinion.
One statement is pretty judgmental, and I doubt whom God saves has to do with whatever labels we mere humans give someone.

There are Christians who believe in the catholic (small c) church, but have not been taught (or have been taught falsely) about the Catholic (big C) church. They cannot reject what they do not know. Only God knows what is in someone’s heart, what struggles they have had, and what demons they have fought (and I think MJ fought a lot of demons, had many struggles, etc.)

The soul goes to be judged by God, and only God knows the answer to that judgement, unless He chooses to let us know usually thorugh His Church.

We will have to wait and see if the canonization cause is opened by the Vatican!

That has more to do with love and good manners than theology. Seriously, what kind of jerk would go to a funeral and opine that the deceased is burning in Hell?

Our response as Catholics is to pray for the repose Jackson’s soul and for the peace of his family.

– Mark L. Chance.

This has always seemed like such a major cop out to me. If a church can go through some process and declare that someone is a saint then there is really no reason why they could not follow a similar process and declare someone to be a (hmm whats a good word here?) nonsaint.

MJ became a Muslim. Muslims do not believe Jesus Christ died for our sins. Hence, MJ rejected the gospel message of belief in Jesus Christ for salvation. Here’s what Jesus Himself had to say on the matter:John 3:12-19 "If I told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things? No one has ascended into heaven, but He who descended from heaven: the Son of Man. As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up (a reference to the cross); so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because **he has not believed **in the name of the only begotten Son of God. This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil."No man is saved by his good works. Men are saved by faith in Jesus Christ alone who Himself accomplished the work of salvation on the cross for us. MJ, as a Muslim, rejected (disbelieved) the divine, gospel message of salvation through faith in the Person and sacrificial work of Jesus Christ on our behalf (1 Cor. 15:3; 1 Pet. 2:24; 3:18). Hence, he died in unbelief, he died in his sins (Jn. 8:24).

Got any scripture to back this?

Are you suggesting while i have called on the name of the LORD that His sacrifice was NOT sufficient for me, because i deny an institution? Hogwash!

The Church cannot control whom God reveals to be in heaven. When there are verifiable miracles in response to intercessory prayers to Michael Jackson, then and only then can the Church step in. And whether his fate is heaven or hell, I seriously doubt that will be happening.

“He who rejects you rejects me.”

Something every Protestant should ponder, but that very few actually do.

I’m surprised the only only speaking any truth on Michael Jackson is Congressman Peter King.

While I’m sure Michael Jackson was kind and gentle, possessing a childlike soul, I don’t think that takes into any consideration the effect his sleeping with young boys had on the young boys themselves.

I recently posted some material on my blog concerning the Church and homosexuality. An essay here:


And a report titled “Causes of Homosexuality: A Christian Appraisal of the Data” by
Andrew J. Sodergren, M.S. of the John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family.


The outpouring of vitriolic bile directed at those pieces was educating to say the least. Here is part of an interview with Robert P George who encounters this stuff all the time:

"Another and far more insidious and brutal way in which many advocates of sexual liberalism deploy cultural power in the cause of redefining marriage is by depicting their opponents as bigots. Across the country, they have pursued a strategy of intimidation against anyone who dares to dissent from their position in a public way. Their appalling treatment of Carrie Prejean is merely one example. Their relentless personal attacks on her were designed to send a clear message to others who aspire to succeed in any area of public life, from beauty pageants to careers in journalism and politics: “If you oppose us, if you have the temerity to express support for the conjugal conception of marriage, we will smear you as a rube and a bigot, make your life hell, and do our best to ruin you.”

After losing the Proposition 8 battle in California, the campaign of intimidation went into full swing. Anyone who contributed money to the Prop 8 effort or played any identifiable role in supporting it was targeted for intimidation. They were depicted as agents of intolerance and enemies of equality. Pressure was put on their employers to fire or discipline them. (I speak from personal experience here: the president of Princeton University, where I am a member of the faculty, was deluged with letters demanding action against me.) Boycotts were launched against their businesses. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS) and its members, who were, as always, generous and active supporters of conjugal marriage, were made a particular target because they were perceived as an especially vulnerable religious minority. The LDS faithful were harassed, their church services were disrupted, and a grotesquely libelous and bigoted video ad depicting Mormon missionaries as home invaders was run against them.

PD: Will the campaign of intimidation work?

George: Campaigns of intimidation succeed only if the victims of such campaigns permit themselves to be intimidated. They fizzle when people refuse to alter their behavior out of fear. As anyone who has ever confronted a school-yard bully knows, bullies are cowards. When their victims stand up to them, they fold like accordions. My advice to supporters of marriage who are targets of intimidation is this: make clear to the bullies that if they seek to intimidate you, your response will be to ratchet up your support of marriage by, for example, increasing your financial contributions to the pro-marriage cause, devoting more time to making phone calls to family members, friends, and members of your religious community, and doing other grassroots work on behalf of marriage. That is what I have personally done. Just as the campaign of intimidation will fail if we refuse to be intimidated, it will backfire if we decide to make it backfire by redoubling our pro-marriage efforts in the face of it.

In the words of a prominent politician who says that though he supports civil unions he opposes same-sex “marriage”: Yes, we can! "

So I see why it seem the wiser choice to remain silent about Jackson when others (Rev Al Sharpton) are crediting him with being a leader in the Civil Rights Movement, another Martin Luther King.

My comments here:




I often read threads about how theology is supposed to answer the “why” questions. So let’s test this proposition. Why does God refuse to release the names of people burning in hell? Especially celebrity type people.

This is a representative statement. It was said to 70 of His disciples at the time, which He sent out into the cities of Israel (see Lk. 10:16). It has nothing to do with the RCC or its hierarchy.

Something every Protestant should ponder, but that very few actually do.

Keep in mind, at the end of His earthly ministry He chose only twelve (not 70) to become Apostles who would take the message of salvation through faith in Him alone to the world.

What RCs need to do is not take Scripture out of context. At no point in time did Jesus become an institution or an institution become Jesus. The danger of taking Scripture out of context is one grossly distorts the gospel (good news) message of Jesus Christ - as you have just demonstrated.

You might want to ponder on this for a while.

Because there’s no one in Hell yet.

But saints are in heaven right? Why?

It’s not a cop out. It simple. For one, the Church, being guided by the Holy Spirit, can examine the life of a particular person. If that person’s life was led in a holy manner (at least the latter part of it), their life can be held up as an example for all Christians - indeed all people. Second, it isn’t really the Church that decides whether someone is a Saint - one of the prerequisites is that there be verified miracles that are positively attributed to the Saint’s intercession. For a soul to intercede on our behalf in asking God to provide a miracle, that soul must logically be in Heaven (or possibly Purgatory - I don’t know whether it’s been determined if the souls in Purgatory have this intercessory power). But simply speaking, the Church declaring someone a saint is really just the Church publicly acknowledging it. The person is and would be a Saint whether the Church acknowledged it or not.

On the other hand, those who are not Saints definitely do not have the ability to intercede on our behalf for miracles, so it would be impossible to know by that criterion whether someone is definitely not in heaven. Likewise, a Saint’s intercession for us in Heaven isn’t a guarantee that God will provide a miracle - it is, after all, ultimately up to God. So, really the absence of a miracle likewise doesn’t prove that someone is eternally condemned.

Since the Church doesn’t know the state of someone’s soul at death, it leaves judgement to God. It merely acknowledges God’s judgement when he demonstrates that a particular person is, in fact, blessed.

As an after-thought, the Church would probably spend every waking moment declaring people “non-saints” if there were a formal process and the ability to do this - and what purpose would it serve? We already have plenty of bad examples living right next to us, and therefore don’t really need some big “here is a person you should DEFINITLEY NOT emulate” type of “non-saint.” Conversely, there is a real need for positive examples to follow, and looking around, it’s not like there are billions of perfect human beings walking the earth.

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