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Old 05-25-2013, 08:50 PM  
Dave Lane Dave Lane is offline
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Pope Francis Says Atheists Who Do Good Are Redeemed, Not Just Catholics

It's all about works, just as it always has been and always should be. The pope says so!

Pope Francis rocked some religious and atheist minds today when he declared that everyone was redeemed through Jesus, including atheists.

During his homily at Wednesday Mass in Rome, Francis emphasized the importance of "doing good" as a principle that unites all humanity, and a "culture of encounter" to support peace.

Using scripture from the Gospel of Mark, Francis explained how upset Jesus' disciples were that someone outside their group was doing good, according to a report from Vatican Radio.

“They complain,” the Pope said in his homily, because they say, “If he is not one of us, he cannot do good. If he is not of our party, he cannot do good.” And Jesus corrects them: “Do not hinder him, he says, let him do good.” The disciples, Pope Francis explains, “were a little intolerant,” closed off by the idea of ​​possessing the truth, convinced that “those who do not have the truth, cannot do good.” “This was wrong . . . Jesus broadens the horizon.” Pope Francis said, “The root of this possibility of doing good – that we all have – is in creation”

Pope Francis went further in his sermon to say:

"The Lord created us in His image and likeness, and we are the image of the Lord, and He does good and all of us have this commandment at heart: do good and do not do evil. All of us. ‘But, Father, this is not Catholic! He cannot do good.’ Yes, he can... "The Lord has redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ: all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone! ‘Father, the atheists?’ Even the atheists. Everyone!".. We must meet one another doing good. ‘But I don’t believe, Father, I am an atheist!’ But do good: we will meet one another there.”

Responding to the leader of the Roman Catholic church's homily, Father James Martin, S.J. wrote in an email to The Huffington Post:

"Pope Francis is saying, more clearly than ever before, that Christ offered himself as a sacrifice for everyone. That's always been a Christian belief. You can find St. Paul saying in the First Letter to Timothy that Jesus gave himself as a "ransom for all." But rarely do you hear it said by Catholics so forcefully, and with such evident joy. And in this era of religious controversies, it's a timely reminder that God cannot be confined to our narrow categories."

Of course, not all Christians believe that those who don't believe will be redeemed, and the Pope's words may spark memories of the deep divisions from the Protestant reformation over the belief in redemption through grace versus redemption through works.

The pope's comment has also struck a chord on Reddit, where it is the second most-shared piece.

More from Reuters:

Atheists should be seen as good people if they do good, Pope Francis said on Wednesday in his latest urging that people of all religions - or no religion - work together.

The leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics made his comments in the homily of his morning Mass in his residence, a daily event where he speaks without prepared comments.

He told the story of a Catholic who asked a priest if even atheists had been redeemed by Jesus.

"Even them, everyone," the pope answered, according to Vatican Radio. "We all have the duty to do good," he said.

"Just do good and we'll find a meeting point," the pope said in a hypothetical conversation in which someone told a priest: "But I don't believe. I'm an atheist."

Francis's reaching out to atheists and people who belong to no religion is a marked contrast to the attitude of former Pope Benedict, who sometimes left non-Catholics feeling that he saw them as second-class believers.
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Old 05-27-2013, 01:24 PM   #61
cosmo20002 cosmo20002 is offline
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Reading through these religions threads, it always strikes me how goddam complicated it all is. If God and heaven and all that is real, I don't think He would make it so ****ing complicated to get there. Be a decent person, don't kill and steal, and you should be good. Having to precisely follow 1000s of ambiguous rules, this God sounds worse than the IRS.
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Old 05-27-2013, 01:41 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by cosmo20002 View Post
Reading through these religions threads, it always strikes me how goddam complicated it all is. If God and heaven and all that is real, I don't think He would make it so ****ing complicated to get there. Be a decent person, don't kill and steal, and you should be good. Having to precisely follow 1000s of ambiguous rules, this God sounds worse than the IRS.
Yep. Welcome to religion. I prefer personal faith.
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Old 05-27-2013, 02:51 PM   #63
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This is actually kinda old news. The Catholic Church has pretty much had this stance for ages now but many (even inside the Church itself) are fairly ignorant when it comes to ACTUAL Catholic teachings and philosophy. I've tried to explain this to people for years and generally get looked at like I have no clue what I'm saying and that this can't possibly be true. The Catholic Church is far far far less exclusionary than most Christian denominations that Americans are used to.

Of course most Catholics down here in Texas and the South are just Baptists who can read.
How long would you consider to be "ages" Kyle?

I went to Catholic school for 12 years. And at no time was this the position taught to us about atheists.
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Old 05-27-2013, 03:20 PM   #64
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How long would you consider to be "ages" Kyle?

I went to Catholic school for 12 years. And at no time was this the position taught to us about atheists.
13 years of Catholic school for me and COUNTLESS hours of discussion of these very topics. And if this position wasn't taught to you then they simply were teaching you incorrectly... something that happens way way way too often. This is certainly not a doctrine shift at all from anything in the last 50 years and in reality isn't much of a different emphasis even. You'd need to go back a few hundred years to get some serious differences in thought among the top thinkers in the Church.

I'm not saying that the Catholic Church is saying all atheists go to heaven as long as they do good works. That's an over simplistic idiotic thing for anyone to think. That is not what Francis said here regardless of the sloppy reporting of it. BUT it is equally wrong and simplistic to say something as piss ignorant as Buc's contention that the Church teaching has always been that ONLY Catholics can achieve salvation.

Pope Francis is not talking about SALVATION at all here he is talking about REDEMPTION... totally different concepts. I can go into more detail on the nuances if you want to discuss it. I won't bother doing so for Buc, she wouldn't be able to keep up so I'm not going to even bother.
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Old 05-28-2013, 12:01 AM   #65
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Well you know it was bound to happen - I am going to chime in on this:

First - To Buc and AC - You're both right but you're fighting too hard at each other to recognize this.

(As an Anecdote to get started I did once make bumper stickers that said "Extra Ecclasiam Nulla Salus" - so you know where I lie on this issue.)

The fact is that this nuance regarding athiests is not so radical as the news outlets would like to make it sound.
I offer an post by a Priest I follow:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fr. Z
People are sending me notes about Pope Francis’ fervorino from Mass yesterday. News outlets (and panicky emails I am getting) are suggesting that the Pope said that atheists go to heaven. HERE

Alas, we never get what the Pope actually said in its entirety. We are only getting bits and pieces as determined by someone working for either Vatican Radio or L’Osservatore Romano or… well… it’s hard to know! This is a problem. Did the newsie doing the reporting making the right selection of quotes? Is the newsie doing the reporting a theologian? We should either get everything Francis says or nothing. Moreover, the Italian accounts and the English accounts of what Francis said differ somewhat. And who knows how what Francis says in these sermonettes will ultimately be related to the Ordinary Magisterium of the Roman Pontiff? We are told that it is doesn’t form part of his magisterial teaching, but… really? They sure are being played up by the Holy See’s news agencies, aren’t they!

Back to the Pope’s sermon from 22 May.

If you go through his comments as reported, and I did, there is nothing in Pope Francis’s remarks about the possibility of atheists being saved that is not in keeping with the document Dominus Iesus.

In a nutshell, Francis was not talking about non-Catholics or non-Christians. He was not talking about those who profess another religion with their own mediators. He was not talking about those who pray to other gods. He was talking about atheists.

Moreover, Francis was clear that whatever graces are offered to atheists (such that they may be saved) are from Christ. He was clear that salvation is only through Christ’s Sacrifice. In other words, he is not suggesting – and I think some are taking it this way – that you can be saved, get to heaven, without Christ.

So, have a care with these sermons. It is great to get pithy lines from the Holy Father about something that is crystal clear such as, say, the Devil. It is another when the pithy quip veers into something that is more difficult to untangle. It is best not to jump to negative conclusions based on the incomplete reports about fervorini of ambiguous magisterial authority.
source: http://wdtprs.com/blog/2013/05/pope-...-for-atheists/

This really is the key here - as will all things regarding faith/religion (as a Catholic at least) we must interpret all of it through the lenses of Sacred Tradition, Sacred Scripture, and the Magisterial Teachings.

The fact is that by living the faith and by practicing the Spiritual and Corporal works of mercy we will encounter others who through our example will be led to Christ - This is what the Pope speaks of on "meeting" them there.

We can only do this best when we keep our eyes fully focused on Christ - if we all did that as Christians we would have a lot less time for the petty stuff

Pax
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Old 05-28-2013, 01:59 AM   #66
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Good point. I would suspect DL being a stand up guy he'd turn it down solely based on principle. Maybe that's where ghosts come from.
Oh shit, that would be tight.

Being a ghost > any other afterlife.
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Old 05-28-2013, 02:10 AM   #67
Jiu Jitsu Jon Jiu Jitsu Jon is offline
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Was the pope speaking this ex cathedra? If not it doesn't matter (to Catholics) anyway. If so, isn't he contradicting the previous "vicars of Christ" when they spoke ex cathedra to the contrary? I'm confused. Which official mouthpiece of the one true church was telling the truth?

Sounds very Universalist. If this is the case then it looks like Jesus wasted his time dying on the cross, since good works without faith are enough.
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Old 05-28-2013, 04:46 AM   #68
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I think I just fell in love with this guy.
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Old 05-28-2013, 07:22 AM   #69
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I'm going to school everyone on this thread.

My credentials: BA and MA in Philsophy specializing in the thought of St. Thomas Aquinas. Minor in Theology from a Catholic college (21 years of Catholic education). Two years as a Benedictine brother. I've read the Catcehism of the Catholic Church from cover to cover and countless theology books.

1. Pope Francis' remarks were taken out of context from an extemporaneous homily at a daily mass and carry the lowest level of Papal authority.

2. NO Pope prior to Pope Francis celebrated mass daily in public. When they did preside at mass and preached a homily it was always a PREVIOUSLY PREPARED and vetted text. Those homilies were always published afterwards and are available on the Vatican Website.

3. Because Pope Francis' homilies are off-the-cuff, there is no text for him to review/correct/revise pre-publication, nor is there any way of going back to verify what he actually said. Therefore, it is very easy for the secular media to blow things out of proportion.

4. According to the incomplete, and poorly transcribed text of the homily in question, Pope Francis affirms that we are all capable of doing good things and that Christ has opened the door to REDEMPTION (a different notion than SALVATION, as we shall see).

5. Even in the Old Testament, the command was to "do good" or, more accurately, to "be good" and follow the 10 Commandments (Jesus did NOT abrogate the 10 Commandments).

6. The Pope said, “And we all have a duty to do good. And this commandment for everyone to do good, I think, is a beautiful path towards peace.” -- this is basic philosopical ethics borrowed from Aristotle and based in...wait for it...REASON, not a principle to be held by FAITH. The notion that people can do good, can be ethical, is much older than Christianity and can, in fact, be held by anybody...believer or not.

7. The Pope also said in the same homily, “If we, each doing our own part, if we do good to others, if we meet there, doing good, and we go slowly, gently, little by little, we will make that culture of encounter: we need that so much. We must meet one another doing good."

8. The Pope isn't talking about heaven at all...he is talking about Peace on Earth! The comments about the athiest doing good, and "meeting there" were taken out of context by the press (like that never happens) and the Pope was made to sound like he said athiests can go to heaven when in fact what he said was that even athiests need to do good so that all people can live in earth in peace and harmony.

9. SALVATION vs. REDEPMTION: Redemption means simply that Christ made it possible for people to be saved (to go to Heaven). Salvation means that we have actually made it to heaven. There is a BIG difference from being able to go to heaven and actually being there. The Catholic Church teaches that we have the hope of Salvation through the redemptive sacrifice of Christ upon the Cross, but that we do not actually know if we are saved until after we die!
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:22 AM   #70
BucEyedPea BucEyedPea is offline
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Originally Posted by Jiu Jitsu Jon View Post
Was the pope speaking this ex cathedra? If not it doesn't matter (to Catholics) anyway. If so, isn't he contradicting the previous "vicars of Christ" when they spoke ex cathedra to the contrary? I'm confused. Which official mouthpiece of the one true church was telling the truth?

Sounds very Universalist. If this is the case then it looks like Jesus wasted his time dying on the cross, since good works without faith are enough.
I raised the "ex cathedra" point too. It doesn't appear he was. Sounds like it was "off the cuff." How do you say that in Latin?
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:28 AM   #71
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1. Pope Francis' remarks were taken out of context from an extemporaneous homily at a daily mass and carry the lowest level of Papal authority.


3. Because Pope Francis' homilies are off-the-cuff,....

9. SALVATION vs. REDEPMTION: Redemption means simply that Christ made it possible for people to be saved (to go to Heaven). Salvation means that we have actually made it to heaven. There is a BIG difference from being able to go to heaven and actually being there. The Catholic Church teaches that we have the hope of Salvation through the redemptive sacrifice of Christ upon the Cross, but that we do not actually know if we are saved until after we die!
Thanks for the new information. This is a very informative post.

After I first read this I then looked up what he said and then changed my position to: Francis did NOT quite say this...at least the way it was first posted. And I agree, it sounds "off the cuff."

More than anything, this is a good sign that Dave Lane, is hoping to be salvaged. It's a step in the right direction.
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:30 AM   #72
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The fact is that by living the faith and by practicing the Spiritual and Corporal works of mercy we will encounter others who through our example will be led to Christ - This is what the Pope speaks of on "meeting" them there.
I did point out this aspect earlier, when I found another link on this event.
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:31 AM   #73
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works are as filthy rags....they will not bring an individual salvation
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:34 AM   #74
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Originally Posted by cosmo20002 View Post
Reading through these religions threads, it always strikes me how goddam complicated it all is. If God and heaven and all that is real, I don't think He would make it so ****ing complicated to get there. Be a decent person, don't kill and steal, and you should be good. Having to precisely follow 1000s of ambiguous rules, this God sounds worse than the IRS.
But there isn't all that paperwork!
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:37 AM   #75
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Which part of 'infallible' don't you understand?
What is it about the Catholic infallibility you do NOT understand?

The Pope is only infallible when he speaks from his throne, called ex cathedra and on the topics on faith and morals. He can make many pronouncements otherwise and they are not infallible nor are they dogmas the people are compelled to believe and follow. This would be on the topic of faith but the statement doesn't appear to be made ex cathedra.
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