Being the resident Catholic at the cigar shop I was bound to be asked about this allegation. I was asked by one of several Baptist preacher friends as it turned out.
In another interview with his longtime atheist friend, Eugenio Scalfari, Pope Francis claims that Hell does not exist and that condemned souls just “disappear.” This is a denial of the 2,000-year-old teaching of the Catholic Church about the reality of Hell and the eternal existence of the soul.
The interview between Scalfari and the Pope was published March 28, 2018 in La Repubblica. The relevant section on Hell was translated by the highly respected web log, Rorate Caeli.
First things first: this place, perrinlovett.me, is no longer a mere blog; it’s a highly respected web log. Get that straight. I may add that to the subtitle…
Second, wow, okay…
Please read on through the link for the Vatican’s response. They say, the Pope says, the report is false and the relevant quote was taken out of context. That may be. It is supposed that the translator/publisher has it out for His Eminence. That also may be. Much may be.
As important as this topic is, or seems, Ecclesiastically speaking, I honestly had not put much thought into it. I’m trying here; bear with me…
Assuming the worst, that the quote is correct and does adequately convey the Pope’s thought, then the matter still does not directly affect God The Father, Jesus Christ, The Holy Spirit, nor the independent relationship of the faithful with The Trinity. It would, however, throw one helluva (pseudo-pun) into the expected, mandated guidance from the Church. The worst being true would amount to a betrayal of the past 2,000 years, and of Jesus. That, bad as it would be, could be cured. But, wow … lamentable is not even the word.
Back to not making assumptions terminal in nature: the remark, true or not, was a remark to a friend. It is not Canon nor does it invoke Papal Infallibility. The Vatican’s response seems to bear that part out.
I’ll just add that the choice of this particular friend, an atheist friend, is interesting. “There is no Hell” sounds like something an atheist would say and accept. It’s not Catholic. It’s not Christian. It’s not even of any “faith” at all.
The concern is that Francis is an Anti-Pope, one destroying, or trying to destroy, the Church. If that’s the case, there is a remedy for it. I really do rely of Christ’s assurance to Peter that Hell (must exist, huh?) shall not prevail. However, as I’ve noted before, that doesn’t mean the Devil won’t try. I’m not sure that we have at hand an Anti-Pope (let alone an Anti-Christ). I am sure this Pope from time to time strains the patience.
Just as his choice of confidants is a little telling so is his previously expressed philosophy. The latter would almost seem more like communism, globalism, post-modern worldy-ism, even, yes, atheism, than Christianity and adherence to Western Civilization. In one, brief juxtaposed example: the current Bishop of Rome chastises gun owners in America for crimes they did not commit while, simultaneously and seemingly, ignoring crimes committed all around the V.C. Do as I say, not necessarily as we do here at Saint Peter’s…
Again it tries the patience. I, being so tried, and tired from it, turn this over to Pat Buchanan, who luckily put more thought into it all that I have:
Did the soul of Judas, and those of the monstrous evildoers of history, “just fade away,” as Gen. Douglas MacArthur said of old soldiers? If there is no hell, is not the greatest deterrent to the worst of sins removed?
What did Christ die on the cross to save us from?
If Francis made such a statement, it would be rank heresy.
Had the pope been speaking ex cathedra, as the vicar of Christ on earth, he would be contradicting 2,000 years of Catholic doctrine, rooted in the teachings of Christ himself. He would be calling into question papal infallibility, as defined in 1870 by the Vatican Council of Pius IX.
Questions would arise as to whether Francis is a true pope.
So many questions. This one is definitely going to develop further. We have one damnable mess on our hands. (Done with puns now). I, as leader of this Highly Respected Web Log, actaully dispatched, this Friday, an agent to Rome – though I fear his investigation will probably center more on local eateries and smoke shops.
And thank you, Brother, for the prayers. We need them.
This at least is certain. Vox Day.