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Posted by: anybody ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 12:32PM

He appears to be saying there's no eternal life for sinners rather than a place of eternal suffering:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/mar/30/vatican-scrambles-to-clarify-popes-denial-that-hell-exists

During the meeting Scalfari asked the pope where “bad souls” go, to which he was quoted as responding: “They are not punished. Those who repent obtain God’s forgiveness and take their place among the ranks of those who contemplate him, but those who do not repent and cannot be forgiven disappear. A hell doesn’t exist, the disappearance of sinning souls exists.”



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/30/2018 12:38PM by anybody.

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Posted by: kathleen ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 12:34PM

At least he said dogs go to Heaven!

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Posted by: ificouldhietokolob ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 12:35PM

...as if the pope knows anything more about the existence of "hell" than anyone else. Hmph.

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 12:42PM

I can relate to that. :)

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Posted by: ificouldhietokolob ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 12:42PM

<grin>

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 12:41PM

This was reported by an atheist friend of his, who may have heard what he wanted to hear, or misunderstood what Francis said. Hell is a difficult doctrine, and sometimes Christians camouflage it in euphemism or evasion.

For example, Billy Graham sometimes said that lost souls will spend an eternity "separated from God," which is true, but a lot more tame than discussing it in terms of active, eternal torment. Although Francis subscribes to certain aspects of the "social (justice) gospel," i.e. "liberation theology," all of his theological statements have been consistent with historic Catholic belief.

I don't see Francis as abandoning the doctrine of Hell. I think this is a misunderstanding or misrepresentation on the part of the friend or the media.

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Posted by: bona dea ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 01:39PM

I dont believe in hell myself, but there is controversy about whether Francis actually said that or whether he was misunderstood.

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Posted by: Elyse ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 11:33PM

You're right, he did not say that.
In fact, the Vatican said the pope never gave the interview.

In my opinion, If there is an afterlife there is probably also a place where the really bad people get to go.

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Posted by: spiritist ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 02:03PM

Religious leaders should know about heaven and hell ------ since they made up both and know little about the after life!!!

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Posted by: jacob ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 02:25PM

Headline should read, unrepentant sinners get the death penalty. What the eff does "disappear" mean?

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 03:04PM

First, we're dealing with somebody's report to the media (always a dicey process), repeated through various media outlets with translation (Spanish? Italian? Latin?) issues as well.

So what does "disappear" mean, Jacob? With the above caveat in mind, what Francis may be postulating is the doctrine "extinction (or annhilation) of the soul. This is held by certain groups, notably the Seventh Day Adventists and Jehovah's Witnesses, and others.

This doctrine (I would call it a heresy) holds that those who are unsaved will experience extinction, probably with torment of some kind, and cease to exist, i.e. "disappear." The saved will enter Heaven, where they can "contemplate God," a theologically wishy-washy statement if I ever heard one. So if you are saved, you get some kind of joy "contemplating God," and if you're not, then after some period (a moment? a billion years?) of agony, you will feel no more pain, because you will be...no...more.

Speaking personally, I accept Christ's teachings of eternal perdition or eternal bliss, but I regard the Biblical imagery of gates of pearl, streets of gold, lyres, fire, and brimstone, etc. as simply that -- poetic imagery. The actual realities will be more extraordinary than mortal minds with human language can possibly comprehend.

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Posted by: jacob ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 03:16PM

Thank you for your detailed response. I apologize for not putting the pointed sarcasm symbol on my post.

In all my years of being stupid it never dawned on me that words could either mean what the mean or mean something different depending on the context Š

Just to be clear, I still think that saying spirits might disappear if they are unworthy is no different than the death penalty.

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 04:52PM

But the word "disappear" I felt was problematic, and that's what I wanted to respond to. I am a Christian (no secret, there!) and I believe that "final judgment" is both real and defensible. It's a difficult topic and people do shy away from it.

Food for thought: If there is no final judgment, then Ted B*ndy, H*tler, Stalin, and Mao, and Joseph Smith and Brigham Young and Mary Baker Eddy and the child-molesting creep down the road who got away with it--every single one of them is "feeling no pain," because they now cease to exist.

Or consider the words of C.S. Lewis: "You have never met a mere mortal."

Edited to locate banned word ("B*ndy")



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/30/2018 04:54PM by caffiend.

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Posted by: ificouldhietokolob ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 05:04PM

caffiend Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Food for thought: If there is no final judgment,
> then Ted B*ndy, H*tler, Stalin, and Mao, and
> Joseph Smith and Brigham Young and Mary Baker Eddy
> and the child-molesting creep down the road who
> got away with it--every single one of them is
> "feeling no pain," because they now cease to
> exist.

Oh, well. The thing is, no matter how much we might wish them to be "punished for eternity," it doesn't mean they will be. Reality doesn't conform to our wishes for some kind of "justice" denied in life.

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 11:30PM


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Posted by: rhgc ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 07:41PM

I, also, find the belief of a hell important. There are people who are so evil that an eternal punishment is deserved.

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Posted by: bona dea ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 08:28PM

If I disappear from work,it doesnt mean I have been vaporized and no longer exist. It means I am not at work. Maybe he meant disappear.from heaven or from his presence. Who knows.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/30/2018 08:38PM by bona dea.

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Posted by: bona dea ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 05:54PM

It could also mean separation from God which is the belief of many Catholics who reject the eternal lake of fire thing. In fact, that is.common among many liberal Christians-not just Catholics.

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Posted by: jacob ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 06:32PM

Is there a word for Christians annoyingly trying to explain things that make perfect sense? Say chirstiansplaining.

I don't know if Francis even said the word disappeared, or if the Italian he was speaking to even understood the deep meaning of Francis's spectacular mind fart. But I do know that there isn't a word in Italian that could both mean disappeared and cut off from god. So I am guessing that when/if Francis said the word disappeared he meant no longer there. For a spirit to cease to exist would be no different that what I consider death.

Francis is a pretty good guy, he means well. But I don't think I can consider him a doctrinal genius. I think what he is, is a dude who doesn't like bad things happening to people, even bad people. So he ends up trying to explain away some of the more disturbing doctrines of Christianity. Of which the worst is eternal punishment.

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Posted by: bona dea ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 06:42PM

We dont know what word he used beause the journalist neither recorded it or took notes. He said what he remembered that the pope said. A Vatican spokesman has said the pope's position was misunderstood which could be true or not. I am not Christiansplaining and I am not a believer. I dont know what Francis said exactly and neither do you since there is no transcript and several reports.I am trying to give all sides which is fair. You seem to be jumping to conclusions.Sorry you find my post annoying, but it isnt required reading.Maybe you should skip my posts in the future if they bother you so much. I am a little tired of your carping when I say the same thing that others said.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/30/2018 06:43PM by bona dea.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 06:48PM

The reporter has misquoted Francis before. So I think his report needs to be taken with a grain of salt. If Francis wants to clarify what he said, he is certainly free to do so.

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Posted by: bona dea ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 06:59PM

And until then, it is unclear what was said.We may never know for sure since it was simlpy an undocumented coversation

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 02:47PM

So I work with an extreme Catholic which is not the same as an extreme Mormon. You can still joke and say anything.

She doesn't like the current Pope. She doesn't like this new "maybe there's no hell" thing he's got going. She wants her Heaven, Purgatory, and Hell. What's with he bait a switch? she asked.

I said maybe you should become Mormon. We have extreme hell--outer darkness where we have weeping, wailing and gnashing of teeth. She immediately did the gnashing of teeth thing and is a natural. So I explained the three degrees of glory which everyone thought sounded good except when I go to the part where you don't get to keep your genitals unless you are one of the perfect Mormons in the CK. All laughed hysterically the more I explained.

I love living in the real world. Have fun in Utah everybody!

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 11:12PM

It probably wouldn't help your friendship to bring this up, but I will with you, in the confines of this Board.

There used to be Heaven, Limbo, Purgatory, and Hell in the Catholic afterlife. Then the RC church said they were wrong, there is no such thing as "Limbo," a place for small children, mentally retarded, and others incapable of authentic moral and spiritual decision. I always thought Purgatory would be the next to go. Maybe I was wrong--Catholicism might jettison the doctrine of Hell next? Who woulda thought?

But seriously, I don't think Francis or any theologian or council of serious position will deny the doctrine of Hell. All this is a tempest in a teapot.

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Posted by: rhgc ( )
Date: March 31, 2018 08:24AM

The theology of the Universalists was that ALL got heaven. The Mormons, other than "outer darkness" for apostates, put non-members into a "spirit prison" until they "see the light" and have work done for them....
The Mormons also have a purgatory called "Paradise".

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Posted by: Karma Chaneleon ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 03:20PM


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Posted by: rhgc ( )
Date: March 31, 2018 08:26AM

I wrote a paper back in 1960 entitled: "Is this Heaven or Hell?"

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 05:01PM

If you look at the quotations in the article regarding the nature of Hell from Popes John Paul II and Benedict, you can see different viewpoints. This is not unusual in Catholicism. All but the most hardline Catholics often debate and discuss things. Francis has strong opinions and he doesn't always follow the party line.

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Posted by: Josephina ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 07:32PM

I would much rather have folks "disappear" than burn in a lake of fire forever. This is certainly better than Calvinism.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 07:37PM

I take the point of view that people remain (willfully) separated from God for as long as they wish to remain separated. There is no compulsion.

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Posted by: Lethbridge Reprobate ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 07:44PM

I kinda enjoy when he pisses of the old guard in his own cult.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 07:48PM

Yeah, I enjoy it as well. He's my kind of pope. Liberal Catholics waited a long time for this guy. It was a given that he would have run-ins with the Curia (the church establishment.)

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Posted by: caffiend ( )
Date: March 30, 2018 10:31PM

Maybe Mueller would like the job when he wraps things up in Washington, October 31 2020. I'm applying for the position of Devil's Advocate in the Court of Love.

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Posted by: Birdman ( )
Date: March 31, 2018 12:26AM

I credit the pope with hubris. How would he know? How would anyone know about heaven or hell? Did he see it in a vision? All those visionaries better hold a meeting and get their stories straight. How could anyone believe this nonsense?

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Posted by: Trails end ( )
Date: March 31, 2018 06:37AM

Trust the Romans to pretend they know everything about gawd...hail ceasar...religion justs disgusts me most days...the implicit trust people place in these jokers is truly nauseating...I am glad to see more people all the time giving these pretenders with the funny costumes a big middle finger

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Posted by: Babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: March 31, 2018 08:35AM

I’m sure he got a talking to. New Coke bombed, go back to Classic Coke.

I guess he hasn’t watched any YouTube videos where someone relates an NDE where they died and went to hell. If there’s no hell, why were they there?

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