Pope Francis: No one can be condemned forever, because that is not the logic of the Gospel!
Amoris Laetitia 296,7
The way of the Church is not to condemn anyone for ever; it is to pour out the balm of God’s mercy on all those who ask for it with a sincere heart… For true charity is always un-merited, unconditional and gratuitous”. Consequently, there is a need “to avoid judgements which do not take into account the complexity of various situations” and “to be attentive, by necessity, to how people experience distress because of their condition”
It is a matter of reaching out to everyone, of needing to help each person find his or her proper way of participating in the ecclesial community and thus to experience being touched by an “unmerited, unconditional and gratuitous” mercy. No one can be condemned for ever, because that is not the logic of the Gospel! Here I am not speaking only of the divorced and re-married, but of everyone, in whatever situation they find themselves.
Naturally, if someone flaunts an objective sin as if it were part of the Christian ideal, or wants to impose something other than what the Church teaches, he or she can in no way presume to teach or preach to others; this is a case of something which separates from the community (cf. Mt 18:17). Such a person needs to listen once more to the Gospel message and its call to conversion. Yet even for that person there can be some way of taking part in the life of community, whether in social service, prayer meetings or another way that his or her own initiative, together with the discernment of the parish priest, may suggest.
|The Last Judgement by Michelangelo; Sistine Chapel|
St. Francis: Unrepentant souls will go into the inferno where they will suffer torture without end.Exhortation to the Brothers and Sisters of Penance
From Chapter Two - Concerning those who do Not do Penance.
See, you who are blind, deceived by your enemies, the world, the flesh and the devil, for it is pleasant to the body to commit sin and it is bitter to make it serve God because all vices and sins come out and “proceed from the heart of man” as the Lord says in the Gospel (cf. Mk. 7,21). And you have nothing in this world and in the next, and you thought you would possess the vanities of this world for a long time. But you have been deceived, for the day and the hour will come to which you give no thought and which you do not know and of which you are ignorant.
The body grows infirm, death approaches, and so it dies a bitter death, and no matter where or when or how man dies, in the guilt of sin, without penance or satisfaction, though he can make satisfaction but does not do it; the devil snatches the soul from his body with such anguish and tribulation that no one can know it except he who endures it, and all the talents and power and “knowledge and wisdom” (2 Chr. 1,12) which they thought they had will be taken a way from them (cf. Lk. 8,18; Mk. 4,25), and they leave their goods to relatives and friends who take and divide them and say afterwards, “Cursed be his soul because he could have given us more, he could have acquired more than he did.”
The worms eat up the body and so they have lost body and soul during this short earthly life and will go into the inferno where they will suffer torture without end.
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So, is the difference to be explained by stating that St. Francis belonged to a different era of the Church? Are the two approaches simply two sides of the same coin? Or is one man right and the other just plain wrong?
View my books on the Blessed Virgin, St. Francis, Padre Pio, and others.