Pope emphasizes: 'you cannot love God outside of the Church' [CWN]

Pope Francis continued his series of Wednesday general audiences on the Church and emphasized that belonging to the Church is essential to being a Christian."We are Christians because …


So if i don’t belong to the church, i cannot get into Heaven? Any certain church? Do i have to be a member? I can’t just worship from home?

Well, to be more specific, you cannot love God outside of Jesus Christ. If you are in Christ, you love God.

The headline in the article distorts what the Pope actually said.

He never said you can not love God outside the Church.

He said you can’t call yourself a Christian outside of the Church, because it was through the
Church you became a Christian in Baptism.


The Pope concluded by asking the Virgin Mary to pray “the grace never to fall into the temptation” of thinking that we do not need the Church. “On the contrary, you cannot love God without loving the brothers, you cannot love God outside of the Church; you cannot be in communion with God without being in the Church.”

The article quoted him as saying just that.

I stand corrected.

So does this mean Jews can not love God ?

Or is he addressing Christians specifically in this statement ?


You would be right if the Church was primarily an external structure and organization but it’s not the case. You should read this paper about “The Ecclesiology of Vatican II” by cardinal Ratzinger. ewtn.com/library/curia/cdfeccv2.htm Here is a quote:

The Church grows from within and moves outwards, not vice-versa. Above all, she is the sign of the most intimate communion with Christ. She is formed primarily in a life of prayer, the sacraments and the fundamental attitudes of faith, hope and love.

You see that the Church is something much bigger and much more difficult to define than just an organization. You don’t love God because you become part of the Church, you become part of the Church because you love God. Personally I think it means that if a non-catholic loves sincerely God he becomes in some mysterious way a part of the Church, even if he doesn’t realize it.

Either way, I find no reason to support him in such a statement.

There is no salvation outside the church. Everyone must convert to the true church, the only church.

The church has always said few are saved. Most Catholics dont even follow the commandments, So what hope does the world have.

You should read this excerpt from cardinal Journet’s book “Church of the Word Incarnate”. It explains very well the matter: outsidethechurchnosalvation.blogspot.ch/2009/12/cardinal-charles-journet-on-eens.html

The beginning of point 4 is a perfect summary:

I do not say that there is no supernatural life at all outside the Church, but simply that there is none that does not look towards her.

It’s simple to understand if you read about the heresies. It is easy to make Jesus in your “own personal relationship” anything that your imagination or will wants
Him to be. History has shown us how distorted that can become: “It’s ok with Jesus; I spoke with him.”

Hello Even.

Yep. You got it. Jesus said to Peter “Thou art Peter and upon this rock I will build my Church.” Notice He didn’t say plural churches, nor did He say that Peter would build the Church. Jesus said He would build it and it is that same Church we have among us to this day. It is the Instrument by which He meant all men to come to Salvation. It is His. Without it you cannot be saved or come to knowledge of the Truth.

If God didn’t want you to go to Church, why did He say He would build it?


P.S. It is by Baptism that all become members of the One True Church although not every one attends. Baptism is the Sacrament of Initiation. I makes one a member of the Body of Christ, the Church. So, if you are validly Baptized you are a member of God’s Church, even if you choose to stay away.

Hello Jim.

If you have love for God you will be drawn to Him and it is in His Church that He is found. When you leave the building you don’t stop loving Him do you? Well, at least I hope you don’t. It isn’t about not loving God but the place He said He would be always found is in His Church and that’s right where He is waiting for souls to come to Him out of Love. There really is no better motive for coming to Church than for love of Jesus Christ. That is the kind of faith that will weather all storms and tribulations.


What if i get baptized and not go to church? There were also lots of people Jesus talked to that were not baptized as far as we know. I spose we can assume it, but asssuming is dangerous. The thief on the cross next to Jesus was probably not baptized, yet Jesus had compassion on him when the thief believed. Prolly didn’t go to church either, and we’ll meet him later. It would appear that we also need to receive the Holy Spirit/Ghost, depending on which version you read. There is as much emphasis on the Holy Spirit as water baptism

Joh 7:39 (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)
Act 1:5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
Act 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. (Here Peter baptizes, then we receive the Holy Spirit)
1Co 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.
1Co 1:17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect. Paul only baptized a few people, preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I think he had quite a few make it to heaven.

Baptism was good enough for Jesus, it should be good enough for us. Yet Jesus never baptized anyone and it means nothing if we don’t believe. Mar 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

As for the Jews, God has hardend the hearts of those that do not want to believe.
Act 7:51 Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.

Sorry about the length I gotta go to bed.

God can’t be found outside of the Church ?

I don’t believe this for a second, nor do I believe this is what Pope Francis is saying.


Your idea and belief is one of selfishness. Jesus set up an institution a church for us. See Matthew 16:18; Matthew 18:15-18; along with what Paul said in 2 Timothy 3.

You have to remember that God set up a church for us, we cannot change that now bc it doesn’t benefit me.

Jesus did baptize people see John 3:22, John 4:1

Now I’m confused. What does John 4:2 mean :confused:

I don’t go to church to get to heaven. Because i’m going to heaven i get to church. I was called selfish by chero23. What about the parapalegics and shut ins and such? They don’t get in if they don’t go? I don’t want a war of words, but that’s selfish thinking. What happens if that becomes you?

I believe bed-ridden people or individuals that are somehow confined to their homes, or even just people who have the Flu, are not sinning by not going to Mass due to their circumstances. An otherwise healthy person who is able to make it to Mass, has an obligation to go. If one doesn’t go, what is their reason for not going? They’d rather do something that is pleasurable to them instead? While Jesus sacrificed His whole life for us, not only just with a tortuous death, but by every fast, sacrifice, and obedience He has ever shown, we can’t make it to Mass for one measly hour, once a week? Yes, that would be the epitome of selfishness.

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