When did Invincible Ignorance become salvific?
#11
In the bible, such persons were miraculously baptized.  It probably still happens to this day.
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#12
I only have a problem when invincible ignorance is displaced by insufferable stupidity.
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#13
(05-05-2010, 04:26 PM)Bonifacius Wrote:
(05-05-2010, 11:01 AM)QuisUtDeus Wrote: I agree with George.  At lot of it is that people misunderstand invincible ignorance.

The doctrine reads in Denziger:

Quote:1647 For, it must be held by faith that outside the Apostolic Roman Church, no one can be saved; that this is the only ark of salvation; that he who shall not have entered therein will perish in the flood; but, on the other hand, it is necessary to hold for certain that they who labor in ignorance of the true religion, if this ignorance is invincible, are not stained by any guilt in this matter in the eyes of God. Now, in truth, who would arrogate so much to himself as to mark the limits of such an ignorance, because of the nature and variety of peoples, regions, innate dispositions, and of so many other things? For, in truth, when released from these corporeal chains "we shall see God as He is" [ 1 John 3:2], we shall understand perfectly by how close and beautiful a bond divine mercy and justice are united; but, as long as we are on earth, weighed down by this mortal mass which blunts the soul, let us hold most firmly that, in accordance with Catholic teaching, there is "one God, one faith, one baptism" [ Eph. 4:5 ]; it is unlawful to proceed further in inquiry.

It absolutely does not say that one can belong to any religion and it doesn't matter.

Because one is innocent of the sin of conscious paganism does not free one from Original Sin or the other mortal sins one may have committed.  This says, "No harm, no foul."  But we don't go to Heaven by default, either.  We need to be in the state of grace and hence in the Church.  So the absence of personal sin is not enough. 

Here are more quotes, interpret them as you like.

Singulari Quidem (same document cited in Denziger)

Quote:7. These are the people whom the Church seeks to bring back to sound reasoning with these words: "What is there more contrary to reason than to seek to exalt oneself above reason by means of reason itself? And what is more contrary to faith than to not want to believe that which we cannot attain by reason?"[15] She never ceases to repeat to them that faith bases itself not on reason but on authority[16] because it is not suitable that God, in speaking to mankind, should use arguments, as if we could refuse to believe. Rather, He spoke as was appropriate, as the supreme judge of everything, who does not have to argue but who rather issues His pronouncements.[17] The Church clearly declares that the only hope of salvation for mankind is placed in the Christian faith, which teaches the truth, scatters the darkness of ignorance by the splendor of its light, and works through love. This hope of salvation is placed in the Catholic Church which, in preserving the true worship, is the solid home of this faith and the temple of God. Outside of the Church, nobody can hope for life or salvation unless he is excused through ignorance beyond his control. The Church teaches and proclaims that if sometimes we can use human wisdom to study the divine word, our wisdom should not for that reason proudly usurp to itself the right of master. Rather, it should act as an obedient and submissive servant, afraid of erring if it goes first and afraid of losing the light of interior virtue and the straight path of truth by following the consequences of exterior words.[18]

Pius IX

Quote:7. Here, too, our beloved sons and venerable brothers, it is again necessary to mention and censure a very grave error entrapping some Catholics who believe that it is possible to arrive at eternal salvation although living in error and alienated from the true faith and Catholic unity. Such belief is certainly opposed to Catholic teaching. There are, of course, those who are struggling with invincible ignorance about our most holy religion. Sincerely observing the natural law and its precepts inscribed by God on all hearts and ready to obey God, they live honest lives and are able to attain eternal life by the efficacious virtue of divine light and grace. Because God knows, searches and clearly understands the minds, hearts, thoughts, and nature of all, his supreme kindness and clemency do not permit anyone at all who is not guilty of deliberate sin to suffer eternal punishments. lso well-known is the Catholic teaching that no one can be saved [without] the Catholic Church. Eternal salvation cannot be obtained by those who oppose the authority and statements of the same Church and are stubbornly separated from the unity of the Church and also from the successor of Peter, the Roman Pontiff, to whom the custody of the vineyard has been committed by the Savior.

Patristics

Quote:“We have been taught that Christ is the first-begotten of God, and we have declared Him to be the Logos of which all mankind partakes (Jn. 1:9). Those, therefore, who lived according to reason [logos] were really Christians, even though they were thought to be atheists, such as, among the Greeks, Socrates, Heraclitus, and others like them . . . those who lived before Christ but did not live according to reason were wicked men, and enemies of Christ, and murderers of those who did live according to reason, whereas those who lived then or who live now according to reason are Christians. Such as these can be confident and unafraid” (First Apology 46).

In the third century, St. Clement of Alexandria wrote: “Before the coming of the Lord, philosophy was necessary for justification to the Greeks; now it is useful for piety . . . for it brought the Greeks to Christ as the Law did the Hebrews” (Miscellanies 1:5). Origen wrote, “There was never a time when God did not want men to be just; He was always concerned about that. Indeed, He always provided beings endowed with reason with occasions for practicing virtue and doing what is right. In every generation the Wisdom of God descended into those souls which He found holy and made them to be prophets and friends of God” (Against Celsus 4:7). In the fifth century, St. Augustine wrote: “When we speak of within and without in relation to the Church, it is the position of the heart that we must consider, not that of the body . . . All who are within the heart are saved in the unity of the ark” (Baptism 5:28:39).
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#14
(05-05-2010, 05:38 PM)DarkKnight Wrote: I only have a problem when invincible ignorance is displaced by insufferable stupidity.

Most Novus Ordo laity I have spoken to are not stupid, matter of fact they are very smart when it comes to their faith.  In my view, invincible ignorance is just not all that possible today.  I have seen plenty of willful blindness on the part of Novus Ordo layfolk but not invincible ignorance.
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#15
(05-05-2010, 06:29 PM)mike6240 Wrote:
(05-05-2010, 05:38 PM)DarkKnight Wrote: I only have a problem when invincible ignorance is displaced by insufferable stupidity.

Most Novus Ordo laity I have spoken to are not stupid, matter of fact they are very smart when it comes to their faith.  In my view, invincible ignorance is just not all that possible today.  I have seen plenty of willful blindness on the part of Novus Ordo layfolk but not invincible ignorance.

Besides proceeding in inquiry being unlawful, several popes have made clear that determining who exactly is invincibly ignorant and what the cutoff is is something only God knows.  Sometimes rationalization (aka willful blindness) is due to a unique kind of ignorance - ignorant of the fact we are lying to ourselves.  Does that count as invincible ignorance?  No idea.  I would guess not since with effort even difficult denial can be overcome, but I'll stick with the Popes and not presume to put a limit on God's mercy.

Bottom line is that those of us who know better are in deep crap if we do the wrong thing; otherwise we should try to convince others of the truth and leave the rest up to God.  We owe this to others so they have a more sure path to salvation, and also if they are saved they can obtain a higher degree of sanctity to God's glory.

In the end, it all works out.  No one goes to hell that didn't bring it upon themselves, and no one gets to heaven without God's mercy and grace.  That we can bank on.
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#16
QuisUtDeus Wrote:The doctrine reads in Denziger:
Quote:1647 For, it must be held by faith that outside the Apostolic Roman Church, no one can be saved; that this is the only ark of salvation; that he who shall not have entered therein will perish in the flood; but, on the other hand, it is necessary to hold for certain that they who labor in ignorance of the true religion, if this ignorance is invincible, are not stained by any guilt in this matter in the eyes of God.

It seems to me the tricky part is reconciling the two halves of that sentence, because on the surface it looks like a clear contradiction.  Raji, growing up in the backwoods of India in 675, has never heard of Christ or the Church, so I assume he qualifies as invincibly ignorant if anyone does.  Ok, so he doesn't carry any guilt for being ignorant.  But he hasn't entered "the only ark of salvation," so he "will perish in the flood." Doesn't he still carry original sin, even if he's lived a sinless life?  Isn't original sin enough to damn one on its own?  I know I'm clueless here, but it starts to look like a semantic argument: no, they aren't damned for being ignorant, but they're damned anyway, so we'd better spread the Gospel.

Or are we saying there are other invisible ways besides baptism to enter the Church without even knowing it?
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#17
(05-05-2010, 07:04 PM)Mhoram Wrote:
QuisUtDeus Wrote:The doctrine reads in Denziger:
Quote:1647 For, it must be held by faith that outside the Apostolic Roman Church, no one can be saved; that this is the only ark of salvation; that he who shall not have entered therein will perish in the flood; but, on the other hand, it is necessary to hold for certain that they who labor in ignorance of the true religion, if this ignorance is invincible, are not stained by any guilt in this matter in the eyes of God.

It seems to me the tricky part is reconciling the two halves of that sentence, because on the surface it looks like a clear contradiction.  Raji, growing up in the backwoods of India in 675, has never heard of Christ or the Church, so I assume he qualifies as invincibly ignorant if anyone does.  Ok, so he doesn't carry any guilt for being ignorant.  But he hasn't entered "the only ark of salvation," so he "will perish in the flood." Doesn't he still carry original sin, even if he's lived a sinless life?  Isn't original sin enough to damn one on its own?  I know I'm clueless here, but it starts to look like a semantic argument: no, they aren't damned for being ignorant, but they're damned anyway, so we'd better spread the Gospel.

Or are we saying there are other invisible ways besides baptism to enter the Church without even knowing it?

The Pope says this for a reason:

Quote:it is unlawful to proceed further in inquiry.

I think it is because those are two truths that appear irreconcilable to us.

In heaven ""we shall see God as He is" [ 1 John 3:2], we shall understand perfectly by how close and beautiful a bond divine mercy and justice are united"

But for now we cannot understand so:  "as long as we are on earth, weighed down by this mortal mass which blunts the soul, let us hold most firmly that, in accordance with Catholic teaching, there is "one God, one faith, one baptism"

In other words it seems to me it is a mystery that can only be understood by Divine Revelation, one that will not be forthcoming (because revelation ended) until we die.
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#18
In my opinion, invincible ignorance applies to the pagans who were born before 1 AD, like for example the Sumerians, Ancient Egyptians Hittites.

And to those who had never heard of Jesus, like the american natives, Incas, mayas, Aztecs, Sioux, before 1492 or they time they first saw a missionary or priest.

But nowadays almost everybody has heard of Jesus, so it doesn't apply. A Hindu for India for sure knows of Mother Therese and the Church.

Perhaps an Afghan woman who has never been allowed by her family or husband to read, watch tv, or leave the house alone, could be invincibly ignorant, but that is an exception that does not apply to most of the worlds population.
It can't be applied to a protestant in Germany or the USA in my opinion.
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#19
Only God will know who is really ignorant at judgement day so our job is not to discern or try to figure out which person or groups fall into these categories but to preach the faith to all human  creatures. All this speculation has turned the church into a debating theological class. Getting into Heaven and avoiding Hell is dead serious not something you would want to hang ignorance on.
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#20
(05-07-2010, 01:19 PM)salus Wrote: Only God will know who is really ignorant at judgement day so our job is not to discern or try to figure out which person or groups fall into these categories but to preach the faith to all human  creatures. All this speculation has turned the church into a debating theological class. Getting into Heaven and avoiding Hell is dead serious not something you would want to hang ignorance on.

Well said, salus!
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