Outside of the Church, there is no salvation
#1
I have to share this talk by Fr. Isaac Mary Reylea. He bluntly lays out the commonly rejected doctrine of the Catholic Church being the only means of salvation. It's honestly a terrifying truth of faith, but something we need to keep in mind if we're ever in fear of "proselytizing" those outside of the Church. I am tired of Church leaders skirting around this truth and preaching universal salvation under the guise of "ecumenism."

And I understood that man can find no reason of all those works of God that are done under the sun: and the more he shall labour to seek, so much the less shall he find: yea, though the wise man shall say, that he knoweth it, he shall not be able to find it. -Ecclesiastes 8:17
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#2
Cardinal Siri called this doctrine, a "truth that burns."

Fr. Relyea is a brave man.

Most clergy will do anything to avoid having to teach this without turning it on its head, explaining it away into a "meaningless formula" 

So successfully has this doctrine been twisted, that the well respected  Mother Angelica could say at the close of the 20th century on television that Catholics who believe the Catholic Faith is absolutely necessary for salvation, were themselves in heresy.  Ironic, and cruel.

Make no mistake, undermining EENS is the lynchpin that made previously condemned modern ecumenism possible.
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#3
(04-13-2019, 10:18 AM)BC Wrote: So successfully has this doctrine been twisted, that the well respected  Mother Angelica could say at the close of the 20th century on television that Catholics who believe the Catholic Faith is absolutely necessary for salvation, were themselves in heresy.  Ironic, and cruel.

IIRC, I believe Mother Angelica said it was a heresy to believe only Catholics go to heaven (ie, "card-carrying" Catholics, those who are clearly identifiable as such). Don't even fringe groups like the SSPV teach that people can be saved as Anglicans, etc, in spite of their religion and not because of it? How does this work with EENS? I admittedly don't know a clear teaching about this. I know that unbaptized catechumens who are martyred are considered among the baptized and those who die desiring Catholic Baptism, holding to all the Catholic teachings, receive Baptism of desire. But those are people who want to be Catholic and baptized as such. I don't know how the other scenarios work.
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#4
(04-13-2019, 10:42 AM)In His Love Wrote:
(04-13-2019, 10:18 AM)BC Wrote: So successfully has this doctrine been twisted, that the well respected  Mother Angelica could say at the close of the 20th century on television that Catholics who believe the Catholic Faith is absolutely necessary for salvation, were themselves in heresy.  Ironic, and cruel.

IIRC, I believe Mother Angelica said it was a heresy to believe only Catholics go to heaven (ie, "card-carrying" Catholics, those who are clearly identifiable as such). Don't even fringe groups like the SSPV teach that people can be saved as Anglicans, etc, in spite of their religion and not because of it? How does this work with EENS? I admittedly don't know a clear teaching about this. I know that unbaptized catechumens who are martyred are considered among the baptized and those who die desiring Catholic Baptism, holding to all the Catholic teachings, receive Baptism of desire. But those are people who want to be Catholic and baptized as such. I don't know how the other scenarios work.

She was incorrect to say that at the very least.  Her listeners would think, Gosh, I dont want to be in heresy and therefore go to Hell for believing that only Catholics go to Heaven.  I will tell everyone that non Catholics can and do go to Heaven, and the only people to be unequivocally condemned are those rigid Catholics that actually believe in the necessity of the Catholic Faith.  

What an inverse of reality. 

Interestingly, sedevacantist groups like the CMRI and SSPV have positions on EENS that are not fringe at all, and are really indistinguishable than that of so-called liberal or mainstream Catholics today.

The unbaptized catechumens who are martyred and those die desiring Baptism holding to all Catholic teachings were never really the source of controversy for the most part.  Applying Baptism of Desire for them?  Fine.  No real fallout or scandal from such a scenario.

As far as I know, the phraseology that heretics and others in false religions can be saved in their religion but not by their religion finds its origin surprisingly in Archbishop Lefebvre, who I do admire, and/or in Suprema Haec Sacra.

 “Evidently, certain distinctions must be made.  Souls can be saved in a religion other than the Catholic religion (Protestantism, Islam, Buddhism, etc.), but not by this religion.  There may be souls who, not knowing Our Lord, have by the grace of the good Lord, good interior dispositions, who submit to God…But some of these persons make an act of love which implicitly is equivalent to baptism of desire.  It is uniquely by this means that they are able to be saved.”   (ArchBishop Marcel Lefebvre, Against the Heresies, Page 216)

 “One cannot say, then, that no one is saved in these religions…” (Bishop Marcel Lefebvre, Against the Heresies, Page 217)
 “Does this mean that no Protestant, no Muslim, no Buddhist or animist will be saved?  No, it would be a second error to think that.  Those who cry for intolerance in interpreting St. Cyprian’s formula Outside the Church there is no salvation, also reject the Creed, “I accept one baptism for the remission of sins,” and are insufficiently instructed as to what baptism is…”   (ArchBishop Marcel Lefebvre, Open Letter to Confused Catholics, Pages 73-74)

 “This is then what Pius IX said and what he condemned.  It is necessary to understand the formulation that was so often employed by the Fathers of the Church:  ‘Outside the Church there is no salvation.’  When we say that, it is incorrectly believed that we think that all the Protestants, all the Moslems, all the Buddhists, all those who do not publicly belong to the Catholic Church go to hell.  Now, I repeat, it is possible for someone to be saved in these religions, but they are saved by the Church, and so the formulation is true: Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus.  This must be preached.” (Bishop Marcel Lefebvre, Against the Heresies, Pages 217-218)

Bishop Bernard Fellay, Conference in Denver, Co., Feb. 18, 2006: “We know that there are two other baptisms, that of desire and that of blood.  These produce an invisible but real link with Christ but do not produce all of the effects which are received in the baptism of water… And the Church has always taught that you have people who will be in heaven, who are in the state of grace, who have been saved without knowing the Catholic Church.  We know this.  And yet, how is it possible if you cannot be saved outside the Church?  It is absolutely true that they will be saved through the Catholic Church because they will be united to Christ, to the Mystical Body of Christ, which is the Catholic Church.  It will, however, remain invisible, because this visible link is impossible for them.  Consider a Hindu in Tibet who has no knowledge of the Catholic Church.  He lives according to his conscience and to the laws which God has put into his heart.  He can be in the state of grace, and if he dies in this state of grace, he will go to heaven.” (The Angelus, “A Talk Heard Round the World,” April, 2006, p. 5.)

The SSPV, The Roman Catholic, Fenton Article, Fall 2003, p. 7: “With the strict, literal interpretation of this doctrine, however, I must take issue, for if I read and understand the strict interpreters correctly, nowhere is allowance made for invincible ignorance, conscience, or good faith on the part of those who are not actual or formal members of the Church at the moment of death. It is inconceivable to me that, of all the billions of non-Catholics who have died in the past nineteen and one-half centuries, none of them were in good faith in this matter and, if they were, I simply refuse to believe that hell is their eternal destiny.”

Bishop Robert Mckenna, “The Boston Snare,” printed in the CMRI’s Magazine The Reign of Mary, Vol. XXVI, No. 83: “The doctrine, then, of no salvation outside the Church is to be understood in the sense of knowingly outside the Church… But, they may object, if such be the sense of the dogma in question, why is the word ‘knowingly’ not part of the formula, ‘Outside the Church no salvation’?  For the simple reason that the addition is unnecessary.  How could anyone know of the dogma and not be knowingly outside the Church?  The ‘dogma’ is not so much a doctrine intended for the instruction of Catholics, since it is but a logical consequence of the Church’s claim to be the true Church, but rather a solemn and material warning or declaration for the benefit of those outside the one ark of salvation.”

Basically, the Dogma that one cannot be saved outside the Catholic Church, is re-interpreted to mean one cannot be saved without  or except by the Catholic Church.  In other words, they are saved in their false religions but through the Catholic Church.  This takes on an entirely different meaning than intended.

It would be hard to think of a more word for word contradiction of Pope Gregory XVI's Summo Iugiter Studio,

 “Finally some of these misguided people attempt to persuade themselves and others that men are not saved only in the Catholic religionbut that even heretics may attain eternal life.” Pope Gregory XVI, Summo Iugiter Studio (# 2), May 27, 1832

I think Lefevbre was in good Faith about his way of explaining it though.

People cannot be saved as non-Catholics.  Full stop. If clergy believe and explain that souls in false religions are given the grace to convert in the moments before death, then it needs to be carefully described as such that they become Catholics before their judgement.  There are no non-Catholics in Heaven.  People can't just go from being heretics to Catholics after their death. 

The implications are incalculable when both Catholics and non Catholics alike hear they can be saved as non Catholics.

The missionary urgency is certainly lessened, as evidenced by its almost complete disappearance after Vatican II.  

What drove those Apostles and priests of the first 19 centuries of the Church to expose themselves to torture and death, was the absolute conviction that every soul they didnt get to would be lost to Hell.

Take that away, and the motivation to sacrifice, while not necessarily completely taken away, is certainly not the same.
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#5
(04-13-2019, 11:59 AM)BC Wrote:  

What drove those Apostles and priests of the first 19 centuries of the Church to expose themselves to torture and death, was the absolute conviction that every soul they didnt get to would be lost to Hell.

Take that away, and the motivation to sacrifice, while not necessarily completely taken away, is certainly not the same.

Agreed. There would be no point in even being a Catholic if other religions could lead you to salvation. Yet, like Our Lord said the road to Hell is broad and the gate is wide for many who choose that path. Enter through the narrow gate.
And I understood that man can find no reason of all those works of God that are done under the sun: and the more he shall labour to seek, so much the less shall he find: yea, though the wise man shall say, that he knoweth it, he shall not be able to find it. -Ecclesiastes 8:17
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#6
(04-13-2019, 10:18 AM)BC Wrote: Cardinal Siri called this doctrine, a "truth that burns."

Fr. Relyea is a brave man.

Most clergy will do anything to avoid having to teach this without turning it on its head, explaining it away into a "meaningless formula" 

So successfully has this doctrine been twisted, that the well respected  Mother Angelica could say at the close of the 20th century on television that Catholics who believe the Catholic Faith is absolutely necessary for salvation, were themselves in heresy.  Ironic, and cruel.

Make no mistake, undermining EENS is the lynchpin that made previously condemned modern ecumenism possible.
It was sad when she, Mother Angelica, stopped wearing her crucifix, an mayhaps even be part of the reason for her organization going south.

Funny things, cameras, how they change human dynamics.

Surely the powers-that-be were constantly trying to oppress, control, and even cajole her, (and her employees), through nefarious means completely unknown to the uninitiated.

I would treat the woman gently if I were you, BC.


Oh, where are the snows of yesteryear!
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#7
(04-13-2019, 07:16 PM)Blind Horus Wrote:
(04-13-2019, 10:18 AM)BC Wrote: Cardinal Siri called this doctrine, a "truth that burns."

Fr. Relyea is a brave man.

Most clergy will do anything to avoid having to teach this without turning it on its head, explaining it away into a "meaningless formula" 

So successfully has this doctrine been twisted, that the well respected  Mother Angelica could say at the close of the 20th century on television that Catholics who believe the Catholic Faith is absolutely necessary for salvation, were themselves in heresy.  Ironic, and cruel.

Make no mistake, undermining EENS is the lynchpin that made previously condemned modern ecumenism possible.
It was sad when she, Mother Angelica, stopped wearing her crucifix, an mayhaps even be part of the reason for her organization going south.

Funny things, cameras, how they change human dynamics.

Surely the powers-that-be were constantly trying to oppress, control, and even cajole her, (and her employees), through nefarious means completely unknown to the uninitiated.

I would treat the woman gently if I were you, BC.
I agree with the last sentence. She did a lot of good. 

Thank you for the in-depth response, BC.
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#8
(04-13-2019, 11:59 AM)BC Wrote: Basically, the Dogma that one cannot be saved outside the Catholic Church, is re-interpreted to mean one cannot be saved without  or except by the Catholic Church.  In other words, they are saved in their false religions but through the Catholic Church.  This takes on an entirely different meaning than intended.

The dogmatic phrase EENS, which comes essentially from St Cyprian in his Epistle 43. It is what the Magisterium has quoted in its definition of the dogma. In the very same letter, however, he defends Baptism of Blood saying it is greater than Sacramental Baptism. But before one can suggest he is referring to the martyrdom of the Baptized, he explicitly adds that salvation is possible "even without water."

The question is how to express the Catholic dogma which asserts Sacramental Baptism makes one a visible member of the Catholic Church, but that one can be put in the State of Grace, and thus on the path to salvation through "Baptism of Blood" and "Baptism of Desire" or what I prefer to call Voluntary Martyrdom and Perfect Charity with the desire for Baptism (so as not to confuse these with Sacramental Baptism), a dogma supported by St Alphonus as de fide, and easily seen to be supported by St. Cyprian, St. Ambrose, St. Augustine, St. Fulgentius, St. Bernard, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Robert Bellarmine, St. Peter Canisius, Pope Innocent II, Pope Innocent III, the Council of Trent, Pope Pius IX, Pope St. Pius X, Pope Pius XII and a whole cadre of theologians (who were universally supportive before Modernism reared its ugly head).

I don't like the use of "without" or "except for" but to translate "extra" as "outside" in an exclusive sense as condemning all who are not visible members of the Catholic Church is incorrect. The question is how to explain the Catholic truth without falling into the errors of a Fr Feeney, or the Modernists.

I'm not sure of the best terminology, but I am sure of what the Catholic Faith teaches.

"Without" or "except through" even if I don't like them, are perfectly orthodox English explanations of "extra" from a dogmatic standpoint, if one means what was taught by the Magisterium.

They are problematic, yes, but just as problematic in modern context as St Robert Bellarmine's notion of the "soul of the Church" and those visibly outside the Catholic Church being somehow invisibly united. His ideas are orthodox, even if people have coopted his ideas to warp ecclesiology since Vatican II (Cardinal Journet, especially).

I appreciate that the doctrine is often minimized, and people often re-interpret or say "without" to try to suggests a universal salvation, but the Catholic dogma does not limit, without some exceptions, salvation to only those who are visibly members of the Catholic Church.

I'm open to suggestions, but I'd think it's pretty silly to suggest that people like Archbishop Lefebvre were looking to undermine the Catholic truth on salvation, especially when it was Lefebvre who made this criticism of Vatican II as regards false ecumenism undermining missionary efforts, putting this blame squarely on Vatican II. It's silly to think he'd critique the Modernists of this and then support their own notion of universal salvation.
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#9
(04-13-2019, 09:06 PM)In His Love Wrote:
(04-13-2019, 07:16 PM)Blind Horus Wrote:
(04-13-2019, 10:18 AM)BC Wrote: Cardinal Siri called this doctrine, a "truth that burns."

Fr. Relyea is a brave man.

Most clergy will do anything to avoid having to teach this without turning it on its head, explaining it away into a "meaningless formula" 

So successfully has this doctrine been twisted, that the well respected  Mother Angelica could say at the close of the 20th century on television that Catholics who believe the Catholic Faith is absolutely necessary for salvation, were themselves in heresy.  Ironic, and cruel.

Make no mistake, undermining EENS is the lynchpin that made previously condemned modern ecumenism possible.
It was sad when she, Mother Angelica, stopped wearing her crucifix, an mayhaps even be part of the reason for her organization going south.

Funny things, cameras, how they change human dynamics.

Surely the powers-that-be were constantly trying to oppress, control, and even cajole her, (and her employees), through nefarious means completely unknown to the uninitiated.

I would treat the woman gently if I were you, BC.
I agree with the last sentence. She did a lot of good. 

Thank you for the in-depth response, BC.
There is something very very good about Mother Angelica. I still listen to some of her old shows. There are times when her commentary cuts straight to my soul. The holy spirit was definitely flowing through her. From what I've heard from her old shows she was an advocate for traditionalism and wasn't shy about it. I can't comment on the above though.

God Bless and I wish you all a Solemn and prayerful holy week.
"The Eucharist is the Sacrament of Love; it signifies love, It produces love. The Eucharist is the consummation of the whole spiritual life." -St. Thomas Aquinas

“To be tempted is a sign that the soul is very pleasing to the Lord.” St. Padre Pio
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#10
I typically see it as the Catholic Church is the typical means to salvation. Could someone be saved outside if it? Perhaps, but it would be via extraordinary means and as such I leave these things to God. Could we have hope and offer prayers for those who die outside of the Church? I don't see why not. Many people have had deathbed conversions. Or maybe even make a great act of Faith in their dying moments. God's Mercy knows no bounds.

At the end of the day it is wrong for any Catholic to not encourage a conversation with the thought that someone can be saved without being Catholic. There's no revelation to prove such a thing. Such things are in God's hands only.
Blood of Christ, relief of the burdened, save us.

“It is my design to die in the brew house; let ale be placed in my mouth when I am expiring, that when the choirs of angels come, they may say, “Be God propitious to this drinker.” – St. Columbanus, A.D. 612

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