Saving grace?

Do English-speaking Catholics use this terminology, “Saving Grace”? What does it mean? Is the term a tautology? What is the etymology of this theological term? If there is a Catholic concept, what is the Catholic view of “saving grace”? Are there equivalent terms in other languages?

I think some theological terms have very similar meanings, so I want to make sure I get the exact meaning of this term, “saving grace”, and how it is different from other terms listed below.

*]God’s mercy, clemency, pardon
*]divine providence

In Christian theology, what is the significance of saving grace? How do you distinguish from the other similar concepts?

Saving (or Sanctifying) Grace is Grace that saves us (meaning we will go to heaven, even if we have a layover in purgatory). Christian Baptism is how we first receive Saving Grace, but we can recover from mortal sin through Sacramental Confession, which also imparts Saving Grace if we are in a state of mortal sin (by which we forfeit our Baptismal Grace).

This is distinguished from Prevenient Grace, which calls everyone (even those who are saved) to repentance and conversion, but cannot be the direct cause of our salvation.

I’ll take a crack at this. The following are my practical definitions.

Salvation is being freed from the bondage to sin (ie, bondage to committing sin). It implies we are turned towards following God’s will.

Grace is supernatural help from God.

God’s mercy, clemency, pardon is His forgiveness of our sin’s, whether or not we have been freed from the bondage to sin.

Divine providence is the Will of God to ensure that we receive the help necessary to reach and maintain our state of salvation. (This is not to imply that we can’t reject this help however).


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