Pope Francis includes Atheists
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    Default Pope Francis includes Atheists

    Pope Francis rocked some religious and atheist minds today when he declared that everyone was redeemed through Jesus, including atheists.
    During his homily at Wednesday Mass in Rome, Francis emphasized the importance of "doing good" as a principle that unites all humanity, and a "culture of encounter"to support peace.
    Using scripture from the Gospel of Mark, Francis explained how upset Jesus' disciples were that someone outside their group was doing good, according to a report from Vatican Radio.
    ?They complain,? the Pope said in his homily, because they say, ?If he is not one of us, he cannot do good. If he is not of our party, he cannot do good.? And Jesus corrects them: ?Do not hinder him, he says, let him do good.? The disciples, Pope Francis explains, ?were a little intolerant,? closed off by the idea of ​​possessing the truth, convinced that ?those who do not have the truth, cannot do good.? ?This was wrong . . . Jesus broadens the horizon.? Pope Francis said, ?The root of this possibility of doing good ? that we all have ? is in creation?
    Pope Francis went further in his sermon to say:
    "The Lord created us in His image and likeness, and we are the image of the Lord, and He does good and all of us have this commandment at heart: do good and do not do evil. All of us. ?But, Father, this is not Catholic! He cannot do good.? Yes, he can... "The Lord has redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ: all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone! ?Father, the atheists?? Even the atheists. Everyone!".. We must meet one another doing good. ?But I don?t believe, Father, I am an atheist!? But do good: we will meet one another there.?
    Responding to the leader of the Roman Catholic church's homily, Father James Martin, S.J. wrote in an email to The Huffington Post:
    "Pope Francis is saying, more clearly than ever before, that Christ offered himself as a sacrifice for everyone. That's always been a Christian belief. You can find St. Paul saying in the First Letter to Timothy that Jesus gave himself as a "ransom for all." But rarely do you hear it said by Catholics so forcefully, and with such evident joy. And in this era of religious controversies, it's a timely reminder that God cannot be confined to our narrow categories."
    Of course, not all Christians believe that those who don't believe will be redeemed, and the Pope's words may spark memories of the deep divisions from the Protestant reformation over the belief in redemption through grace versus redemption through works.
    The pope's comment has also struck a chord on Reddit, where it is the second most-shared piece.
    More from Reuters:
    Atheists should be seen as good people if they do good, Pope Francis said on Wednesday in his latest urging that people of all religions - or no religion - work together.

    The leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics made his comments in the homily of his morning Mass in his residence, a daily event where he speaks without prepared comments.

    He told the story of a Catholic who asked a priest if even atheists had been redeemed by Jesus.

    "Even them, everyone," the pope answered, according to Vatican Radio. "We all have the duty to do good," he said.

    "Just do good and we'll find a meeting point," the pope said in a hypothetical conversation in which someone told a priest: "But I don't believe. I'm an atheist."

    Francis's reaching out to atheists and people who belong to no religion is a marked contrast to the attitude of former Pope Benedict, who sometimes left non-Catholics feeling that he saw them as second-class believers.
    Pope Francis Says Atheists Who Do Good Are Redeemed, Not Just Catholics

    Check out link for some video

    I see two trends in comments:

    Ones like these,

    Really Pope Francis??? Christ will redeemed a firm unchanging Atheist and an unbelievers who does not believe in Him??
    2 Peter 3:17 "You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability".
    Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe. ...

    "But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep. For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; if he did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; ... 2 Peter 2:1-22 ESV
    essentially accusing the Pope of being a false prophet (aka sinful, of the devil, etc)

    And others like these

    Trust me, as an atheist I'm baffled by this as well. I'm really not worried about what the Christian god thinks of me, so I don't know why he went out of his way to tell everyone.
    And then a ton of "YAY, LOVE THIS GUY! THIS IS AWESOME!!!"

    I get the first, and I get the second, but I don't really get the third. What do you think and why?

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    Mega Poster mom3girls's Avatar
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    You dont get why people would think it was great?
    Lisa
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    I don't get it either. Atheists don't care what the Pope or the Christian God thinks about their worthiness to get into heaven, because they don't believe in heaven or the Christian God. Not sure why a Christian would care if an atheist is in heaven or not either.
    ~Jordan~

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    Quote Originally Posted by mom3girls View Post
    You dont get why people would think it was great?

    No, not really. Because I don't get why on earth an Atheist would care (in fact I know plenty who will be insulted ~ ), and I think that there is going to be a HUGE backlash from many segments of Christians who will disagree passionately that there is any sort of scriptural basis for such a notion.

    I'm a unitarian so it doesn't really affect me any, but I find the whole thing a little strange. Why tell people who don't want into your club that you are letting them in?

    So no, maybe you could explain why it is great?

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    Posting Addict GloriaInTX's Avatar
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    Seems like kind of a stupid thing to say. If you are telling all the Catholics it doesn't really matter if you believe in Jesus or not you will be saved anyway than why bother following the Catholic teachings you might as well just do whatever you want.
    Mom to Lee, Jake, Brandon, Rocco
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    Not sure how I feel about it.
    Lisa
    Molly, Morgan, Mia and Carson

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    Quote Originally Posted by mom3girls View Post
    Not sure how I feel about it.
    Oh you seemed so shocked that I didn't get it I was sure you were thrilled or something. Hm.

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    I do not follow the teachings of the Catholic church at all and obviously do not agree what this guy is saying.

    I do know many though who believe that everyone will go to heaven as long as they are a good person. Basically I think that is what he is saying.
    mom2robbie likes this.

    ~Bonita~

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    Posting Addict GloriaInTX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlyssaEimers View Post
    I do know many though who believe that everyone will go to heaven as long as they are a good person. Basically I think that is what he is saying.
    Exactly. There are lots of people out there that believe this and these are the people in that third category who are commenting. They probably aren't Catholic and don't even believe in the pope but go the easy route that it doesn't matter what religion you are if you are a good person then we will all go to whatever place in the sky that turns out to be the right one. Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu, Christian, Jew, Atheist ... whatever floats your boat we will all end up together as long as you are a nice person.
    Mom to Lee, Jake, Brandon, Rocco
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    I never consider a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosopy, as a cause for withdrawing from a friend. --Thomas Jefferson

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    Quote Originally Posted by GloriaInTX View Post
    Seems like kind of a stupid thing to say. If you are telling all the Catholics it doesn't really matter if you believe in Jesus or not you will be saved anyway than why bother following the Catholic teachings you might as well just do whatever you want.
    I dont think that is what he is saying though. He is saying that people who do good will be saved, whether they believe or not. Now it is possible to believe this and believe that the only way to do good is to follow catholic teachings.

    Personally I think this is good simply because it is inclusive. He was talking to his followers, so Im sure he doesn't care if Atheists are happy or upset about this, and I dont see why you would be if you dont believe anyways. But he is coming from a place where his predecessor basically thought non believers were horrible people. He is saying that is not true and to treat them as equals, because Jesus saved Everyone, not just you. Basically, cut the holier than thou crap people, we are all equal in the eyes of god and will be judged according to our actions. It is not Your place, or Your call.
    Kyla
    Mom to Arianna (5), Conner (3) and Trent (my baby)

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