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James Bright wrote:

Hi, guys —

I'm saved.

  • Does becoming a Catholic mean that my salvation is not real?


  { I'm saved. Does becoming a Catholic mean that my salvation is not real? }

John replied:

Hi, James —

Salvation is dynamic, not static. It's not a one time event. It is a complete work of Christ from beginning to end. It is by grace alone and received through faith which must work in love. In other words, it is a free gift which me must accept but must also cooperate with. St. Paul said, "He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it." Over and over again, the Scripture talk about perseverance, obedience of faith, putting to death the deeds of the flesh by the Spirit" and so forth so while accepting Christ as Lord and Savior is a step in the journey, it is a first step.

Coming into the Catholic Church means you've come to believe that the Church of Jesus Christ fully subsists in the Roman Catholic Church. It doesn't deny that other Christians have grace working in their lives but we don't judge whether a man is saved or not. That's God's call. We are confident in His mercy and have a moral assurance of salvation. As for others, it is only our place to preach the whole truth, not to judge the condition of their souls.


Paul replied:


No, it does not mean that your salvation is not real, it means that you can now have a correct understanding of what salvation means.

Union with God demands a relationship, as union with any earthly friend or relative would.
There is, at least hypothetically, the possibility of us turning our back on our friend in the future
or harming him to the point of breaking our relationship with him. The same principle would apply to our relationship with God.   This grave act on our part is specifically called mortal sin. It is mortal because it is serious enough to break our relationship with God our Source of salvation and cause mortality (or death) to our soul.

Nevertheless, thank God for the Sacrament of Confession! Through this sacrament Jesus forgives us and reconciles us to the Father and His Church. Then we are back on the road to salvation.
You see, the protestant claim, that once you accept Jesus you are saved, regardless of your future acts of the will, find no place within Catholicism nor right reason. Free will necessitates that our love for God, not only in word but expressed in our lives, must be chosen and not rejected.
To claim that it is not possible for people to reject God after they had once accepted Him would call into question human freedom.

Final impenitence, the unpardonable sin, is not pardonable because the person refused to repent of their grave sins which broke the relationship.

  • Cooperate with God's grace
  • live according to God's will as expressed through His body, the Church
  • receive God's forgiveness in Confession when you fall

and you can take some solace in knowing you're on the right track. The track that Christ established as the Way, the Truth, and the Life.


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