This pope is certainly the answer to my prayers!
One of my goals is to look for unity within ALL members of the Body of Christ, not only those who are formally baptized or accepted into Catholicism. The Church must preserve her teachings and keep them pure, which is one reason we have apologists. But knowledge in itself does not bring us to God, and can in fact inflate our pride.
1 Cor 8:1b-3
Now in regard to meat sacrificed to idols: we realize that “all of us have knowledge”; knowledge inflates with pride, but love builds up. If anyone supposes he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. But if one loves God, one is known by him.
One problem is that too many people try to build an intellectual Tower of Babel, whereby they think scholarly study is the sure way to the kingdom:
1 Cor 13:2 “And if I have the gift of prophecy and comprehend all mysteries and all knowledge; if I have all faith so as to move mountains but do not have love, I am nothing.”
The Church has never taught that one must formally be a Catholic to be saved, but especially when we are trying to learn the details of our own faith, we can become inflated with pride to think that our superior knowledge is going to make us better than them.
Jesus constantly taught against “salvation by group identity” … the Pharisee and the tax collector, the Good Samaritan, and there are several other examples.
Thank you for posting this. I don’t have time to elaborate more now, but I will come back to this thread! :tiphat:
Note: I am definitely not saying that there is no value in being Catholic. There obviously is. Just that being Catholic does not guarantee heaven, nor does not being Catholic sentence you to hell. Even though the Church has never taught that, it seems that many Catholics want to believe it.