Weekend Theology Questions and Answers

Post your theology questions in the comments section. This is not a place to argue your point of view. Questions on Catholic theology please.

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32 Responses to Weekend Theology Questions and Answers

  1. Matt says:

    If only somehow I knew if a loved one was released from Purgatory to Heaven after all the Masses I offered. I know they a Mass offered to a person who is in Heaven that God applies that Mass to those in most need in Purgatory. That is good. However, with my limited resources, I would rather have Masses said for other deceased loved ones and those living and fallen away from the Catholic faith.
    There are 30 Gregorian Masses that can be offered to a loved one to release them from Purgatory. But I read some need many more Masses to be released.
    What is my best course of action here. Have Masses said for the living first and then those that passed away but may be in Purgatory.
    Lastly, those that I fear are in Hell, can I continue to offer Masses for them, as several Saints have written that God can go back in time and take our Mass offerings and provide even more graces at that person’s moments of death and be saved.

    • Ron Conte says:

      God does not change the past. You should not focus so much on the deceased souls, as God is merciful to everyone. You should not try to exempt from Purgatory the deceased souls of your loved ones. 30 Masses is more than enough. Some persons are required by God to suffer in Purgatory, despite what we might do for them. Pray more for the living.

  2. A Recent Reader says:

    Mr. Conte,
    If you please– Is the Church’s teaching that animals other than humans (specifically, pet dogs) do not have a soul that persists after physical death, and therefore cannot go to Heaven? And, is it a settled issue/final position?
    Thank you very much!

    • Ron Conte says:

      The lower animals, such as pets, do not have an immortal soul. So when they die, they entirely cease to exist. However, after the general Resurrection, God makes a new Heaven and a new earth, and it may be that the new earth includes pets that the resurrected Just had during their lifetimes. These pets would be created anew, with the new earth, perhaps. That point is speculative, but it is settled doctrine that animals’ souls do not go to Heaven.

    • A Recent Reader says:

      Thank you for such a helpful answer!

  3. A Recent Reader says:

    If You Please,

    Very frequently during Jesus Christ’s ministry we read of how He commanded people He healed not to speak of it, yet they did so actively anyway.

    That seems to demonstrate further an ongoing dynamic of His holding out the opportunity for people to rise to a higher standard of behavior, while willingly subjecting Himself to their failure to do so.

    Is there something in particular to be learned from this that isn’t readily apparent?

    Thank you!

    • Ron Conte says:

      They were imperfect in this, not mortally sinful.

    • A Recent Reader says:

      Thank you. In case it matters, I was not asking this in relation to my previous questions- I have just puzzled over this when it comes up because it’s always told without further commentary–He strongly commands them not to tell anyone, but they do- far and wide … . I just wondered if there was some surprising meaning that I was missing?

    • Ron Conte says:

      It’s something to meditate on. The Gospel passages often have multiple meanings, not only one correct interpretation.

    • A Recent Reader says:

      Thank you.

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