Question and Answer session (new)

The previous Q and A post was popular, so I’m posting another one. Questions on the Pope Francis situation should be on posts related to that topic. Let’s keep this space for other subjects.


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31 Responses to Question and Answer session (new)

  1. Mark P. says:

    From the Catechism, 819 “Furthermore, many elements of sanctification and of truth”273 are found outside the visible confines of the Catholic Church: “the written Word of God; the life of grace; faith, hope, and charity, with the other interior gifts of the Holy Spirit, as well as visible elements.”274 Christ’s Spirit uses these Churches and ecclesial communities as means of salvation, whose power derives from the fullness of grace and truth that Christ has entrusted to the Catholic Church. All these blessings come from Christ and lead to him,275 and are in themselves calls to “Catholic unity.”276.
    My question is, even though it may sound counter-intuitive, to what degree can our Orthodox and Protestant brethren contribute to the indefectibility of the Roman Catholic Church?
    Thanks for opening this feature again.

    • Ron Conte says:

      In the narrow sense, indefectibility is the work of the Holy Spirit to protect the teaching of the Church, and to some extent her decisions on discipline and how She is governed, so that the body of Christ never falls away from the Head, Christ himself. And Christ has chosen to structure the Church so that his representative on earth, the Pope, would be blessed with a type of indefectibility in his person and office. Then, too, the body of Bishops, not individually but only as a body, have the same indefectibility as the Pope, specifically, that neither the Pope individually, or the Bishops as a body, can teach material heresy nor commit the sins of apostasy, heresy, or schism.

      To some extent, though, since the Church is One, all her holy members, all Christians, and all non-formal members (non-Christian persons of good will, in a state of grace), contribute to the holiness of the Church, and thereby confirm all her gifts, including indefectibility, by their cooperation with grace.

    • Tom Mazanec says:

      Ron, your reply here breaks off in mid-sentence.

    • Ron Conte says:

      I don’t know what I was going to say there. My reply seems complete without that half sentence.

  2. Matt says:

    There are so many unbelievers and sinners in this World. Why doesn’t Pope Francis, or Cardinals, or Bishops, perform miraculous healing of the sick, blind, deaf, or quadriplegic, around the World wherever they visit? Could you imagine how many people would be moved to convert to the Catholic faith to hear or see such incredible healing of the impossible frequently and around the World? We know how in the Gospels how Jesus Christ and the Apostles healed so many and so many were converted.

    • Ron Conte says:

      The Angelic Shepherd (whom I believe is Fr. Zlatko Sudac) will be a Pope who performs many miracles. But his time has not yet come. If only the faithful were actually faithful, and avoided all mortal sins, we would see many more miracles in the world.

      In addition, at some time, the Miracle of Garabandal will heal millions of persons worldwide.

  3. jbbt9 says:

    As souls spend varying amounts of “time” in purgatory, I presume it exists within the laws of time and not eternity.
    Is there any teaching on the subject.

    Thank you in advance

    • Ron Conte says:

      No specific magisterial teaching, of which I am aware. I think that time in purgatory is outside of the timeline of earth. Purgatory is a separate place and time. So if you die one day before the general resurrection, and you require one year in purgatory, you spend that year in purgatory, and then are resurrected on the day after you died.

  4. Tom Mazanec says:

    Ron, on the Discussion on The Poll on Pope Francis, I posted a question on Hell because your Q&A post had closed comments, and when I emailed the question to you you asked me to post it on the blog. Perhaps it would be better to move it here?

  5. arkammler says:

    When do you think Fr. Zlatko Sudac get a promotion?

  6. Matt says:

    I am sure you have heard that Playboy Founder Hugh Hefner died on Wednesday. I find it quite appalling that so many commented that Hugh Hefner rest in peace or is in in Heaven with the angels or what a great guy etc. Not one single person commented that Hugh is probably been condemned to Hell for leading a gravely immoral life and led many to grave sin. I am not one to judge, but as we all know, Hugh Hefner exploited females and was a smut peddler all the way to the end of his life. I am pretty sure that Hefner did not repent before death. If I would write online that he is judged to Hell, I would be ridiculed. Why bother it seems to tell people these days of realities of Hell apply to fornication, adultery, masturbation, and pornography. Seems that most people only think rapists and murderers go to Hell. We truly live in a sad state of affairs where secular society has completely lost the meaning of grave sin.

    • Ron Conte says:

      Unless he repented of all of the very many mortal sins he committed in his life, and there is no indication that he did, then God judged him and sent him to Hell, where he will be severely tormented forever and ever.

    • Marco says:

      Matt, we cannot know his fate, but we surely have to hope that he was saved, and certainly we shouldn’t hope (much less rejoice) for his damnation.

      The following testimony may help you to understand my point

      “In the lowest and most painful (degree of Purgatory)… here there are the sinners who have committed terrible crimes during life and whose death surprised them in that state. It was almost a miracle that they were saved, and often by the prayers of holy parents or other pious persons. Sometimes they did not even have time to confess their sins and the world thought them lost, but God, whose mercy is infinite, gave them at the moment of death the contrition necessary for their salvation on account of one or more good actions which they performed during life.” (Revelation from a soul in Purgatory to Sister M. de L.C, from “An Unpublished Manuscript on Purgatory”)

      So we should not presume on someone else’s damnation. This testimony was about souls of great criminals, that is, even worse sinners than Mr. Hefner. We will have many surprises in the afterlife.

      I’m saddened by the judgemental way of thinking of many of my brothers in faith, whose main purpose in life seems to be thinking about others people’s damnation.

      I think that if we had even a small glimpse of what hell really is, we wouldn’t wish it even for the worst sinner ever lived.

  7. Matt Z. says:

    First, concerning the “marriage debt,” you say that one spouse may reject the other of the marital debt for no reason at all for a short period of time. After reading the (Summa on the marriage debt, St.Thomas states that “the debt must always be paid to the one who asks lest he be afforded an occasion of sin(Article 9 reply to Obj 1.) ” Can this be reconciled with your view? Second, it seems like according to St.Thomas it is a venial sin to ask for the marriage debt on Sundays and holy days(articles 7, 8 & 9), is this true?

    • Ron Conte says:

      Saint Thomas’ opinions are not dogma. They lack 700 years of magisterial teaching since that time. So, instead of starting with St. Thomas’ view, I’ll state my own understanding.

      Refusing the marriage debt is not intrinsically evil, so it depends on intention and circumstances. Refusing at any time for any reason, or no reason at all is permissible. It does not endanger the other spouse, since “sex on demand” is not necessary for the faithful to be able to refrain from sexual sin. I disagree that asking for the marriage debt is a venial sin on Sundays and holy days, since marital relations is part of the Sacrament.

      However, as the period of time that one spouse refuses the other continues, there does arise an increasing possibility of sexual sin. In addition, marital relations is a part of the sacramental relationship, which should not be omitted for long periods without cause. So, for those two reasons, there exists a moral obligation for the spouses not to refuse one another for lengthy periods of time.

      The moral weight of the reason needed to refuse increases with the length of time. No reason is needed for refusal on any occasion. A light reason is needed for refusal to continue for a short space of time. A grave reason is needed for refusal for a long time, or indefinitely. But there are many different circumstances, and many different reasons the Church permits spouses to separate for a definite or indefinite period of time.

      Spouses may refrain from all marital relations, esp. after they have procreated and raised some children, if they have a grave reason, such as danger to the health of the wife if she should conceive again. They may also refrain if they both agree, and if there is no danger of mortal sin, but only if they have already borne children. There is an obligation before God for spouses to procreate and raise children, since that is the primary purpose of marriage.

    • Tom Mazanec says:

      Does a wife have a moral obligation to have sex with her husband just because he wants it? Men do not have a right to sexual activity. I am a single male Catholic who, by this reasoning, is always in an occasion of sin. I have struggled with this all my life. Why should not a husband have to struggle with it if his wife does not wish intercourse?

  8. Tom Mazanec says:

    Could Extraterrestrial beings exist? If so, could they be fallen and need Jesus? Would the Incarnation on Earth count for them, or would Jesus be born and die on other planets?

    • Ron Conte says:

      Without assuming the existence of extraterrestrials, if so: they would be fallen, as they are in this fallen universe. They could be saved by implicit baptism of desire, that is, by love of neighbor. They could know of the existence of God and of the moral law by the light of natural law (reason). The death of Jesus was once for all, so they would be saved implicitly by Him. He would not have to keep being born and dying on each planet.

  9. Marco says:

    Sorry about the ” i” often written in capital letters, it’s the automatic corrector, it’s not intentional.

  10. Mark P. says:

    How do we know if we are doing enough to love our neighbor? Is this love best manifested by prayer and small acts of friendship, or is more expected such as volunteering or donating money or goods? Is it selfish to say, save for retirement instead of giving more money to others?

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