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Life is tough. Nuns are tougher.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Atheist Heaven

My apologies for my absence. Our internet connection died and went to heaven from whence it came, for surely the internet is heaven sent.

I jest.  But we've had quite a time lately discussing the Pope's recent statements. Leave it to a new Pope to say things. He's been very busy saying things. He actually gives a pep talk every day. Of course, since this is the Catholic Church we don't call them pep talks. We call them "fervorinos", which is Latin for "Sermonette".  A little sermon. A pep talk.

So the Pope got very enthusiastic about the idea that Jesus came to us with love and redemption for everyone.  He excitedly reiterated the "everyone" part saying, "even, atheists".

That led everyone to go viral with the news that the Pope said atheists will get to go to Heaven, with my internet connection device.

But the Pope did not say that atheists will go to Heaven. He said that  "Jesus has redeemed all of us." Which is true.  

It was a sermonette, though, so Pope Francis didn't clarify that, because we have free will, we have to choose redemption. You are not redeemed if you do not accept God's gift. Like any gift, if you don't sign for it when it's delivered, the UPS man takes it away. It isn't gone. It sits at the UPS store until you come and sign for it. You could always go get it. That's what the Pope meant. God's gift is waiting at the UPS store, even if you're an atheist.

There is no controversy or problem with the Pope's statement. But I do wonder why he choose to crack this particular theological egg open in this format where a further explanation is necessary.

Because this particular theology is some extra heavy lifting. It's at the heart of why the separated brethren are separated. Redemption vs. good works.  Some pundits went so far as to extrapolate that what the Pope meant was the if a atheist was a good person who did good works that that was good enough to get your Heaven ticket punched.

I have to think that the Pope was tickled to kick the hornets nest. It causes our heads to rise, our ears to open and the next thing we know we're all talking about Truth.  

I can't wait to see how he peps us up next.

5 comments:

dre said...

Heehee! Sister, I love the UPS analogy. A favorite holy priest I know says God's love and redemption for us is like a bonfire on a cold night. We can stand around and complain about the cold, but that isn't God's fault. We only have to walk over to the fire to get warmed up. He's always burning with love for us.

Katie said...

I love this new pope already--and I love his style. Why should he have to explain when he drops truth bombs? We have tons of heavy-hitters who already have. It's delightful to see the media unwittingly stirring up theological debates!

Anonymous said...

It always amazes me how someone can take your spoken words and turn them around to something you did not say.

I told my husband that I thought it was scary that the government could keep tabs on a citizen by looking at their phone records, email and what you read on the internet.

His take was that I supported what Andrew Snowden had done, I said nothing like that at all.

I would like to know how people makes this transition in what you said to what they want to hear.

Maureen said...

I wish Pope Francis could sometimes give his sermons in English!

Rachel Cagle said...

UPS analogy is perfect! Great words, and I totally agree-- Pope Francis has some style about him.