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

Hello Even.

Yes, the most perfect reason to go to Church is because you love God and want to be with Him both now and forever. However through the years that love motive waxes and wanes and grows stronger and weakens. We are all sinners and from time to time there are those who go on Sunday’s to Church simply because they don’t want to go to Hell and there is an obligation to attend Mass and keep the Sabbath Holy. It takes work and sometimes we fall short in the motivation dept.

Folks like cripples, the sick, new mothers, the blind and the elderly, etc. can either get help getting to Church or have a Communion Call made to them by either their Priest or Religious or some other Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion. When they are truly homebound or in hospital, then God doesn’t hold it against them and the Church follows God’s lead. Folks in Alaska have a hard time getting to Church and when our country was young there were miles and miles to travel to attend Sunday services, some had to leave their farms on Saturday and got to town then and spent the night to go to Church and would leave afterwards for the trip home. Dangerous and time consuming. But they did it. There are folks who use a half-hour drive as an excuse to not attend. Or the weather. But slackers will slack. I’m not a slacker and I suspect you aren’t either Even. But devotion over time takes work and stick-to-it-tive-ness.

As for your last question, I am disabled and there may soon come a time when I too will need assistance in my Mass attendance. I pray that never happens, but I have a seriously debilitating disease that could rob me of my mobility. It has twice already. It is my daily reality. When and if that happens, I’ll deal with it same as everyone else who has mobility issues, etc. Pray for me.

Now about another ancillary issue to your question. If a person isn’t impeded in any way and doesn’t believe in going to Church and stays home for that reason, then yes, they are committing a very serious sin. It is both against the Commandments and the Church’s Precepts to do so and they would be in mortal sin. They would have to go to Confession for it and at least be willing to give that up to receive Absolution and the ability to receive the Eucharist once again. Mortal sin and venial sin is something you are probably not so accepting of because you aren’t Catholic. Silly me - there are Catholics who disagree with that and find it hard, but those of us who take this stuff seriously DO. I do. I believe all the Holy Catholic Church believes and teaches because God has revealed it Who can neither deceive nor be deceived. I love the Act of Faith for Faith truly has been my Gift from God and I thank Him for it every day. I’d love to share my Gift with you if you’d like. But you’ll have to pray to God for at least the willingness to believe what is right and then act on the inspiration that will come via the Holy Spirit in the form of Grace.

Hope I answered your question.

Glenda

Hello Even.

I’m no Bible expert, but the passage only refers to that point in time, those events recorded for our eyes to see. It isn’t an absolute statement as in “God never Baptized anyone ever! because that small Scripture says He didn’t.” I could point out that it was He who Baptized with the Holy Spirit, His very own Person, but that would cloud the issue you bring up. Jesus did Baptize persons and the Scriptures can be relied upon to show this. So did His disciples. Try not to loose focus.

Glenda

What thorns and glendab stated is true. When I said don’t be selfish this is what I meant. Never in the Bible do you see individualism as people nowadays make it out to be. Remember God told Abraham, Moses, King David, the prophet Isaiah and Jeremiah to lead his people, he never said it’s just you and and me. In the NT we see that more, Paul even emphasizes that we are a community and to pray for one another.

What these two individuals stated is true and beat me to it. If you know, that you have to go to Mass (I know your Protestant) but you say,nah I don’t need to go it’s just me and God, then as the others mentioned, you are not listening and obeying God when he says in Matthew 16:16, this is my church. Or when Paul says, that the Church is the pillar and foundation of Truth. Once again we must know that it’s institution.

You mentioned about the bed ridden and sick, does God condemn them for not going to Mass. And the answer is no, bc they are not able to go. Is similar to when an infant dies wo him/her being baptized. Now John 3:3-5 tells us that everyone must be baptized in order to go to the kingdom of a God, but since these infant’s parents didn’t do their job, the baby will not be condemned, but the parents will, bc they didn’t do their job.

I know in a way it offended you that I said selfish, but what I was trying to show you, that Bible always preaches community over individualism.

Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church are one and the same. You cannot separate one from the other. God is the Church .

All salvation is through Jesus Christ and accordingly through his Church. That does not mean you have to be a member of the Catholic Church. Catholic teaching is clear that those who are not members can come to know Christ and can be saved even if, due to invincible ignorance, they never come to join his Church.

And this part of the message becomes obscured with the cart blanch statement that you can not love God outside of the Church.

The statement sets up a mental block for others who have already received the gift of faith in Jesus Christ, but have not been able to over come the obstacles which keep them outside of the institutional Catholic Church.

Christ came into my life before I returned to the Catholic Church. And it was a non-Catholic who brought me to Christ.

Did he not love God ?

Jim

Yes, yet the Church also teaches that one cannot know the truths of the RC faith, and then leave the Church, without placing their souls at risk. This point is one that is lost among the points made about salvation–there are millions who have left the Church, and “if” they knew what the Church teaches, they placed their souls at risk. It is impossible for me (or anyone) to know if any given soul is at risk once they leave the Church since they may never have been taught the faith–yet of the many millions who have left, it sure seems possible that some have rejected the teachings of the Church in knowing way.

Except, all saving Grace comes through the Church–so even if one is outside the Church, yet still loves Christ, they came to love Christ because of His Church, even if they do not realize that. :slight_smile:

It is definitely a problem when profound theological doctrines get distilled down to a sound bite or quote. I have a feeling that this is not what the Pope said or that if he said if it did not come across the way he meant it to but I would agree that the way it came across is hurtful to our separated brethren and those who have not yet come to know Christ

And essentially this is the same thing I said earlier. :wink:

Jim

Agreed

Amen!

And Glenda, Chero, know that i will always and truly be in prayer with and for you. Glenda, i am dropping to my knees at the end of this post to give my sincere prayers for your healing and comfort. Hope to talk again here, as it helps to talk. God is always good!
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Sir,
Would you elaborate on invincible ignorance? And whose church are you referring to?

He is referring to the Catholic Church. Invincible ignorance means that the person does not know of Christ and His Church.

Hello Jim.

I think perhaps you misunderstand something and are taking offense where none it given.

When a person is validly Baptized using correct form and matter, no matter where this happens, in the home, at the time of death such as for infants in the hospital or elsewhere, or adults in various denominations throughout the world, or in the Parish Church, all these persons are instantly members of the Church regardless of where they actually are. Christ cannot deny Himself in the Sacrament, so it is with the Church. It is a once-in-a-lifetime Sacrament. It isn’t limited by a person’s love of God. The love we have for God develops over time. Surely you would see that infants, Baptized where they live with their parents consent, have anything like a mature love for God the moment they are Baptized? No. They don’t. Nor do many adults either, but they are still members of the Church. A person can nurture love of God in his or her heart and still not be actively attending Church. Their love for God should guide them to the one true Church, the Catholic Church. It is the natural outcome if one remains open to the grace God gives and acts on that grace.

What Pope Francis is saying is that outside the Church there is no one who really has an authentic love for God because if they did, they would journey towards His Church whether or not they actually make it to the journey’s destination in this life. When one loves God in one’s heart, one will be drawn to His Church out of that love. And one feeds the other. When one honestly tries to love God, He does respond with grace that draws persons to Him, to the One Place He dwells among men - His Church. I suspect that your love of God is what God responded to in your heart long before you realized it was happening and brought you back to the Church. I’m glad you back but work on nurturing the love of God in your heart so it will become a mature love. Then you’ll understand better.

Glenda

glendab

I think perhaps you misunderstand something and are taking offense where none it given.

I’m not offended and never said I was. How you came to this conclusion I don’t understand. :shrug:

When a person is validly Baptized using correct form and matter, no matter where this happens, in the home, at the time of death such as for infants in the hospital or elsewhere, or adults in various denominations throughout the world, or in the Parish Church, all these persons are instantly members of the Church regardless of where they actually are.

Most non-Catholic Christians believe they are members of the Church, which is not limited to being a member of the institutional Catholic Church.

For them, the Church is mystical body of Christ, which is not limited to the institution and the powers in control of it.

Can they not love God ?

Christ cannot deny Himself in the Sacrament, so it is with the Church.

Christ can’t do what ?

Baptism is a Sacrament of Faith. No faith, no Sacrament.

A Baptism is probably invalid if a person agrees to be Baptized without faith, but with “just in case,” superstition.

It is a once-in-a-lifetime Sacrament. It isn’t limited by a person’s love of God. The love we have for God develops over time. Surely you would see that infants, Baptized where they live with their parents consent, have anything like a mature love for God the moment they are Baptized? No. They don’t. Nor do many adults either, but they are still members of the Church. A person can nurture love of God in his or her heart and still not be actively attending Church. Their love for God should guide them to the one true Church, the Catholic Church. It is the natural outcome if one remains open to the grace God gives and acts on that grace.

I don’t disagree with love of God guiding a person, but that love doesn’t necessarily lead a person into the Catholic Church, especially in places where a person would not be able to become Catholic, for whatever reason.

shrug:

What Pope Francis is saying is that outside the Church there is no one who really has an authentic love for God because if they did, they would journey towards His Church whether or not they actually make it to the journey’s destination in this life.

You’re assuming this is what Pope Francis said, but the article doesn’t articulate what the Pope meant.

The fact is, the Church teaches us that there are germs of truth in other religions.

She also teaches that for those, through no fault of their own who have no knowledge of Jesus Christ and His Church, can be saved.

Knowledge isn’t just being told about Jesus and the Church. It involves understanding through revelation.

Humans often set up conditions which prevents this from happening, and there are many who are not Catholic because of what Catholics did to them.

Also there are many who are not Christian, because of what Christians did to them.

Can they still love God when He reveals Himself to them, however that may happen ?

When one loves God in one’s heart, one will be drawn to His Church out of that love. And one feeds the other. When one honestly tries to love God, He does respond with grace that draws persons to Him, to the One Place He dwells among men - His Church. I suspect that your love of God is what God responded to in your heart long before you realized it was happening and brought you back to the Church. I’m glad you back but work on nurturing the love of God in your heart so it will become a mature love. Then you’ll understand better.

This is from your own experience.

But it’s an error to believe that others will not have the same experience outside of the Catholic Church.

Yes, it’s wonderful when they find the truth in the Church, but lets not fool ourselves in believing that we have the fullness of truth ourselves, because we’re in the Catholic Church.

As St Augustine essentially something to the effect of, there are those having found themselves Catholics, being attracted by the doctrines, remain so, but they have yet to become Christians. While there are others, having received the gift of faith become Christian and then Catholic, because of their love for Jesus Christ.

Jim

There is only One church. The Holy Catholic Apostolic Church founded by Jesus Christ and headed by Pope Francis, the vicar of Christ.

From the Cathecism:

*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.

Hello Jim.

I’ve got a few issues with your statements. The first is that you believe a person has to have faith of some sort or there is no Sacrament of Baptism. We Baptize infants and they have no faith, no clue and they are missing just about everything including teeth. The Church doesn’t believe that their Baptism will somehow become a Sacrament later as their faith develops, so your statement about no faith, no Baptism needs some explaining.

Secondly there are adults who get Baptize for less-than-perfect reasons, one being they are marrying a Catholic and want to act in good faith but may or may not believe all the Church believes and teaches. Baptism can still be given them because it is a Sacrament of initiation and it will be later they can receive Confirmation. They don’t need a perfect faith to be Baptized, just a desire to become Catholic. BTW even if they had a very fractured belief system, that wouldn’t have any baring at all on the validity of the Sacrament. All that is needed is matter and form. As long as it is water they use with nothing added and the proper formula is said, then the Sacrament is good. No where is it found in Church teaching that faith or lack of it has any effect on the Sacrament. Where ever did you get such stuff?

Third off the bat is the Church teaches this: Extra ecclesia, nolo salus or outside the Church there is no salvation. This usually open a can o worms every time it get said, so be careful. It is true and Pope Francis has said along those lines that those outside the Church are also lacking in love for God that is authentic. Whatever experiences of love for God persons have outside the Church, isn’t for you to judge. Everyone who is asked is going to say they love God, well almost anyone - don’t ask your local Satanist - he’d tell you he hated God. But everyone else is going to say that they love God. But I say if they really did they’d seek Him out and in seeking would find Him in the Church. That where He is. He said He would be there till the end of the world and that’s exactly where He can be found.

You say you are a revert and I’m assuming since your reversion you’ve lost those erroneous beliefs that kept you away. So, that means you believe that we DO have the fullness of the faith in the Catholic Church, which is a direct contradiction of the fourth part of your post that I noted above. Surely since your reversion, you don’t think other places have what we have, do you?

Glenda

glendab;

I’ve got a few issues with your statements. The first is that you believe a person has to have faith of some sort or there is no Sacrament of Baptism. We Baptize infants and they have no faith, no clue and they are missing just about everything including teeth. The Church doesn’t believe that their Baptism will somehow become a Sacrament later as their faith develops, so your statement about no faith, no Baptism needs some explaining.

The Church allows Baptism of infants through the faith of their parents who promise to raise the child in the faith.

The Church even requires sponsor, aka God Parents, in case the parents are unable to raise the child in the faith.

CCC

Faith and Baptism

1253 Baptism is the sacrament of faith.

Then

But faith needs the community of believers. It is only within the faith of the Church that each of the faithful can believe. The faith required for Baptism is not a perfect and mature faith, but a beginning that is called to develop. The catechumen or the godparent is asked: “What do you ask of God’s Church?” The response is: “Faith!”

For generations, Catholics, used Baptism as a social event more than a sacrament.

Today, priest interviewing parents who seek to have their child Baptized, will first inquire about their faith, and whether they are committed to raising the child in the faith.

Secondly there are adults who get Baptize for less-than-perfect reasons, one being they are marrying a Catholic and want to act in good faith but may or may not believe all the Church believes and teaches.

Baptism just so a person can marry in the Church is an invalid reason for being Baptized.

Yes, this is what has been done, but not how the Sacrament is suppose to be received.

It’s not a good argument to use how the Church has been Baptizing infants and people over the years, especially in the USA.

Mafia members had their children Baptized, yet Pope Francis says members of the Mafia are excommunicated.

Do you think there was faith present at such Baptisms, or was it more of a cultural social event ?

In my opinion, Baptism in the modern USA( I can’t speak for other places) was the most abused Sacrament of all Sacraments.

Jim

So how does all this compare with Protestant baptisms? I presume that they also need to be baptized to be Christians.

I don’t care how it compares.

I care how the Sacrament is used in the Catholic Church and for centuries, it was abused.

Jim

How Christian and ecumenical is that?

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