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Pope Francis Says Atheists Who Do Good Are Redeemed, Not Just Catholics

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by Open_Minded, May 23, 2013.

  1. Open_Minded

    Open_Minded Nothing is Separate

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    Pope Francis Says Atheists Who Do Good Are Redeemed, Not Just Catholics

    For years, I participated in inter-faith dialog. Although there were individual Catholics participating as well... I NEVER thought I'd live to see the day when the POPE would utter such words.

    This is wonderful news for all of humanity. Religious warfare and violence will only end if religious leaders challenge their followers to live in harmony with others.
     
  2. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest I have the kavorka
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    An earlier pope also said we heathens could get into Heaven.
    It was the one before Ratzy.
    I don't his exact words, but it was striking in its generosity.
     
    #2 Revoltingest, May 23, 2013
    Last edited: May 23, 2013
  3. ruffen

    ruffen Active Member

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    Oh, now I'm relieved! I was worried that not believing in Heaven and Hell would send me to Hell.
     
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  4. Open_Minded

    Open_Minded Nothing is Separate

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    How right you are. I just found this site

    ;)
     
  5. Vouthon

    Vouthon Dominus Deus tuus ignis consumens est
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    Very true!

    Pope John Paul II said this, one example out of many different occasions:


    That was an official, doctrinally binding church encyclical actually. I wasn't even born in 1990, so its not entirely new :)

    However it was stated much earlier by Vatican II:


     
  6. Secret Chief

    Secret Chief Meghalayan Ape

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    You'd end up somewhere that you do not think exists?! That's a very flexible mind you have there! Look out for the cognitive dissonance!
     
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  7. LuisDantas

    LuisDantas Aura of atheification
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    I'm pretty sure Ruffen was jesting. :)
     
  8. Jayell

    Jayell Jayell

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  9. LuisDantas

    LuisDantas Aura of atheification
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    Shame on him for being sensible and earning good will and support that way, eh?

    Sometimes you just can't win, it appears.
     
  10. Terrywoodenpic

    Terrywoodenpic Oldest Heretic

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    Interesting...
    he seems a rather "Special" Pope.
    But it will not ring well with Calvanists, to whome Belief is paramount.
     
  11. lewisnotmiller

    lewisnotmiller Grand Hat
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    I decided that whilst I was unbelieving God, I could unbelieve cognitive dissonance as well. Still, this announcement is all good. We could use it as a recruitment message to Christians, I reckon.

    'Tithe-free ticket to Paradise'

    Or something. Messaging isn't my strong-suit, but it might work better than those 'You know it's a myth' billboards.
     
  12. LuisDantas

    LuisDantas Aura of atheification
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    I suppose not. But then again, it is not like Calvinists often make a point of trying and settling their differences with the Pope, now is it?

    I'm fairly certain that one can be disapproved by Calvinists all the while being a decent person anyway.
     
  13. lewisnotmiller

    lewisnotmiller Grand Hat
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    Meh...in seriousness, I'll welcome anything from any side that smells less like fundamentalism, and more like actual human respect and interaction.
    It's just a weird contradiction to discuss atheists getting to heaven. Any time your communicating, you have to aim it at your audience.

    The Christians are listening to it and wondering why they have to go to church when a bunch of devil-spawn are going to invade Heaven and the atheists are wondering why they should care if the dude in the funny clothes says they can go to a place that doesn't exist after they become worm food.
     
  14. Jayell

    Jayell Jayell

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    Now dont forget to include God in the discussion. I also BELIEVE the pope forget to get Gods opinion on this one. (Heb 11:6 )
     
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  15. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest I have the kavorka
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    He's been quite silent on this & other issues lately.
     
  16. LuisDantas

    LuisDantas Aura of atheification
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    I don't think it is a contradiction, unless one takes as a premise that belief in God is necessary to attain heaven.

    As it turns out, such a premise is weird and unlikely at best, even taking for granted that the Christian God is literally true.

    Perhaps most significant of all, though, is that even if such a teaching that "heaven is only for believers of the True Faith" were true, it would still be very poor religious teaching to actually propose it as a given. For starters, that would be teaching that God is poor in judgement and easily fooled or bribed.

    Whether there is a god or else, that is simply not worth teaching.


    As I understand it, the message from Pope Francis is basically that Christians shouldn't feel duty-bound to go to church, at least not as a goal; and that we unfaithful kaffirs are just people and should be judged on our own merits, not those of our lack of belief (whatever those may happen to be, if anything). More specifically, that we are not more of "devil-spawn" than anyone else, Christian or not. And, quite explicitly, that Heaven is not earned by belief alone (and perhaps not even mainly by it).

    Imagine that. A Christian leader that hopes to reach his flock by means other than scaring them into obedience.

    What is next? Reminding people that Muslims are not to be treated as savage beasts either? Next you know there will be world peace or something. :)


    I don't know about you, but I do care a great lot if anyone decides that they would rather see me as an actual human being as opposed to a convenient boogeyman and scapegoat. The very least I want to offer in return is reciprocity. I like to actually deserve that what is given me.
     
  17. LuisDantas

    LuisDantas Aura of atheification
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    I'll call your Hebrews 11:6 and raise it into John 13:34. And throw in a little Luke for good measure.

    Anyone can interpret the content of the Bible as they see fit, you know. Which is why we should all take responsibility for how we use it.
     
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  18. lewisnotmiller

    lewisnotmiller Grand Hat
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    Meh...it strikes me that I started my last post with 'in seriousness' and then proceeded to only make a passing reference to what I was serious about (mutual respect is good), before making more (probably poor) jests.

    In truth, what you say here makes a lot of sense, and I agree with it. You almost have much more patience than I in posting it...lol

    Just to explain my (admittedly warped) sense of humour though;

    The 'contradiction' I was joking about only works if you look from an atheist or Christian viewpoint. It doesn't work if you apply empathy. Applying empathy is good, but my weak humour fails because of it...

    The bit I had under that, about atheists being devilspawn and whatever, was very much tongue-in-cheek. I need a 'Caution - Stupid humour ahead' sign or something...
     
  19. Secret Chief

    Secret Chief Meghalayan Ape

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    I've got a spare you can have.
     
  20. Jayell

    Jayell Jayell

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    John 13:34? what are you saying?
     
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