Francis is asked about Hell — and answers
This was bound to be special. On Sunday, March 8, 2015, “Pope” Francis visited Santa Maria Madre del Redentore parish in a Roman suburb. While there, he answered sundry questions from children and youngsters; among them was a query about the Catholic dogma of hell.
Here is an excerpt of a news report by the Vatican Information Service:
Later, in the church, he met with a group of children and young people, and answered their questions. The first was: if God forgives everything, why does Hell exist? The Pope replied that Hell is the desire to distance oneself from God and to reject God’s love. But”, he added, “if you were a terrible sinner, who had committed all the sins in the world, all of them, condemned to death, and even when you are there, you were to blaspheme, insults… and at the moment of death, when you were about to die, you were to look to Heaven and say, ‘Lord …!’, where do you go, to Heaven or to Hell? To Heaven! Only those who say, I have no need of You, I can get along by myself, as the devil did, are in Hell – and he is the only one we are certain is there”.
(“The Pope meets the parishioners of Tor Bella Monaca”, Vatican Information Service, Mar. 9, 2015; red print added.)
That’s it: To escape everlasting punishment and “enter by the narrow gate” (cf. Mt 7:13), all it takes is a quick “Lord…!”or — let’s be generous — a quick “Lord, have mercy! I am so sorry!” just before you pass out of this world, and you’re good to go. Not all that narrow of a gate after all, huh? Martin Luther couldn’t have said it better himself, and St. Alphonsus Liguori could have saved himself a lot of ink if he had only known about Bergoglio’s version of preparation for death. Oh well.
Here’s a little Reality Check from the Council of Trent:
If any one saith, that justifying faith is nothing else but confidence in the divine mercy which remits sins for Christ’s sake; or, that this confidence alone is that whereby we are justified; let him be anathema.
(Council of Trent, Session 6, Canon XII)
We might add also that an act of perfect contrition, to be genuine, cannot be motivated by the fear of hell, only by the love of God (that’s what makes the contrition perfect — and of course it must include the genuine intention to go to confession as soon as one is able). (More on perfect contrition here.)
Francis’ false gospel of exaggerated mercy actually leads people to commit more sin. His repeated one-sided emphases on mercy and forgiveness, which reached a climax in late 2013 when he told his followers that the Last Judgment is going to be a cakewalk, are an indirect invitation to sin. Yet one of the indispensable conditions of obtaining God’s forgiveness is the firm purpose of amendment: “Go, and now sin no more” (Jn 8:11). This is basic catechism stuff, Catholicism 101.
According to Francis, apparently the only sin for which people actually go to hell is the sin of presumption. Oh, really? Nothing else damns a soul? Not despair? Not idolatry? Not murder? Not blasphemy? Not impurity? Not detraction? Not calumny? Not envy? Etc.? “Know you not that the unjust shall not possess the kingdom of God? Do not err: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor the effeminate, nor liers with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor railers, nor extortioners, shall possess the kingdom of God” (1 Cor 6:9-10).
By saying that Satan is the only creature “we are certain” is actually in hell, Francis is suggesting that no human being might ever have gone to hell, in thousands of years of human history. Yet, we know from Divine Revelation that this is false. Not only do we know that most people, alas, will be damned (see Mt 7:13; cf. Mt 25:41; Apoc 20:15; 21:8), we also know that Judas Iscariot in particular is in hell (see Mt 26:24). In addition, in 1459 Pope Pius II condemned the proposition, “That all Christians are to be saved” (Apostolic Letter Cum Sicut; Denz. 717b).
Francis is again leading people to believe that attaining eternal life is a tremendously easy task that only centers around one thing: forgiveness, mercy. But this is not the Gospel: “And he that taketh not up his cross, and followeth me, is not worthy of me” (Mt 10:38); “He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be condemned” (Mk 16:16); “Do you see that by works a man is justified; and not by faith only?“ (Jas 2:24). Heresies usually originate in the focusing on one aspect of a given truth and then exaggerating it, to the detriment of other truths. This is what we see in Francis’ false gospel of exaggerated mercy.
Of course, the Vatican II Church’s professional apologists are on stand-by to defend their Modernist client at any time. They will be happy to tell us what he “really” meant to say about hell and how we’ve taken it out of context, etc., ad nauseam, as we’ve been hearing for the past two years. But even were one to grant that Francis was taken out of context here or otherwise misunderstood, one must nevertheless ask, of course, why it is that a man who, if he were really Pope, would have the strictest obligation to speak in a precise and clear manner at all times, never manages to say anything that cannot be taken in six different ways.
Pope Pius VI warned Catholics against the innovators of his day, who used deliberate vagueness and ambiguity in their speech to spread poisonous errors, and who did not even shy away from contradicting themselves in order to appear to be confused rather than determined in their rejection of Catholic teaching. Pius VI made clear that when “it becomes necessary to expose statements that disguise some suspected error or danger under the veil of ambiguity, one must denounce the perverse meaning under which the error opposed to Catholic truth is camouflaged.” The Pope furthermore exposed as an “erroneous pretext” the heretics’ sly maneuvers according to which “the seemingly shocking affirmations in one place are further developed along orthodox lines in other places, and even in yet other places corrected; as if allowing for the possibility of either affirming or denying the statement, or of leaving it up to the personal inclinations of the individual,” adding that “such has always been the fraudulent and daring method used by innovators to establish error. It allows for both the possibility of promoting error and of excusing it” (Pope Pius VI, Bull Auctorem Fidei, introd.).
Early on in Francis’ “pontificate”, it became clear that the man has a habit of contradicting himself in his exhortations and his actions, so that, for example, at one point he tells people to preach the Gospel always, and yet at the same time he goes out of his way to confirm members of other religions in their false beliefs and even chastizes those in his church who attempt to make converts. Francis’ inconsistencies became so glaring that we put a post together that samples some of them:
The matter is clear: With Jorge Bergoglio, “Pope” Francis, we have a most dangerous Modernist on our hands. Pope Saint Pius X called Modernism the “synthesis of all heresies” and its promoters “the most pernicious of all the adversaries of the Church” (Pius X, Encyclical Pascendi, nn. 39, 3). This is a very serious matter that must not be glossed over. Modernism is at the heart of the Vatican II apostasy, and we have documented over 100 examples of Francis’ Modernism in action to demonstrate that we are not dealing with a rare, unintentional slip of the tongue here but with a strategic attack on and rejection of Catholicism as it was handed down to us from Christ through the Apostles up until the death of the last known Pope, Pius XII (d. 1958).
The conclusion to all this is that while Bergoglio may be a lot of things, Pope of the Catholic Church isn’t one of them.
Non habemus Papam.
Image source: composite with base element from shutterstock.com