23 thoughts on “If you need an extra push to find your bearing this Lent, start here:”

  1. I believe that most people do go to hell, but saying that 99.999848% of people go to hell isn’t really encouraging for me… if statistically speaking no one makes it, why even try to be good? I’m not trying to be cute and maybe humanity was just having a really bad day, but still just very discouraging.

    1. Why is it discouraging? Take a look around. How much of society is utterly lost? Faith Hope and Charity. Stick to it.

      1. It’s discouraging because I don’t think I’m in the top 99.999% of good people who have lived or are alive today. And if that’s what it takes to just avoid hell, my chances are not good. I just hope that God is even more merciful during these difficult times because we don’t have a lot a lot going for us.

        1. If you have contrition, have done penance, and vow to amend your life, then your past doesn’t matter. You’ve been forgiven all that. All that matters is your firm purpose of amendment and your future behavior. Get to it.

          1. I will. It’s just that I have been given a major cross in my life and I am trying my best to stay close to Our Lord and stay in a state of grace. Every day is a struggle. Please pray for me.

          2. Ditto on praying for you Eddie. Don’t ever lose hope. Our Lady is key. I ask Her constantly, daily to help me….and She desires to help us more than we do.

    2. First of all, if you strive to always do good and keep the sacraments you will not go to hell. This is why I hate the doom and groomers. The fire and brimstone trads who monetize guilt. Do your best, go to confession and mass. And don’t worry.

    3. Hi Eddie, remember the promises of Our Lady of Fatima regarding the First 5 Saturdays Devotion: ”Look, my daughter (said to Lucia) at my Heart, surrounded with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce me every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. You at least try to console me and say that I promise to assist at the hour of death, with the graces necessary for salvation, all those who, on the first Saturday of five consecutive months, shall confess, receive Holy Communion, recite five decades of the Rosary, and keep me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary, with the intention of making reparation to me.”

      I don’t think enough attention is given to the astounding promise here ”….with the graces necessary for salvation…”. Do the devotion as often as you can, however, once for yourself is all she asks! Keep the Faith 🙏 (NB emphasis may be necessary for the lukewarm that the promise (and similar astounding promises) do not mean we can ever turn off the narrow path!).

  2. When you look at nonbelievers, other religions and Catholics who pick and choose what’s sinful and what’s not, it sounds about right. Think of how many Catholics think abortion is okay, contraceptives are okay, etc…

    1. I know, but these numbers are from hundreds of years ago when people, in my mind, were generally holier than we are now. At least Catholics who believed and practiced their faith…What chance do people today have?

      1. I don’t believe it’s a matter of chance: more like deliberate action on our part to correspond to all of the Graces that God has assigned/dedicated to us so we can live our very specific vocations aligned with His Will and intentions.

        Winning our ultimate salvation is not a “crap shoot.”

        You/we exist at this point in time for a very specific purpose and He has “allocated” all the Graces you/we need to “achieve your/our mission.” You/we need to continually ask for, accept and allow those Graces to flood our lives with His presence and propel us forward in good works and sanctity…and then struggle. Saint Theresa of Avilla is known to have said, “We have one purpose in life and that is to struggle.”

        “At the end of the day” it is HIS Grace that gets us to heaven…and He will not cut you/us loose to make it on your/our own….pray continually and always seek His Graces and correspond to the Divine Will. He knows what we are up against living in this insane world – and if the solution to all our problems is necessarily a Catholic solution we are the messengers and “activators.” Whatever Graces are necessary for us to fulfill our part of that mission are already reserved for us. Daunting.

        An acquaintance made the observation that God has this great warehouse of Graces in heaven ready to dispense those Graces to those who ask for them. Since so few people today are asking for those Graces God will dispense them more abundantly to those who ask for them –

        Immerse yourself in prayer, the sacramental life and always have recourse to your guardian angel, “O Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom His love commits me here, ever this day be at my side to light and guard; to rule and guide. Amen.

      2. I think many people in the past pretended to practice the faith because if was a socially acceptable thing. I don’t think many people talking about spreading the gospel and saving souls when actually seizing the wealth of heathens for personal gain were good ambassadors of Christ. What about the time when they claimed non-white people were basically animals to justify their robbery when evolutionism became a thing? It contradicted the moral tenets of faith and not many Christians protested back then because you would be laughed at.

        People who claim to be Christian have to be counter cultural these days. No more pretending because it is expected.

      3. Tribalism was more the rule than it is today, and Bishops and priests had more power in steering the populations in their geographical areas. There were many strongly Catholic areas, and also many many many sinners.

        A big difference between then and now is those people of the past didnt have their cultures corrupted by the “perfidious Jews” as our is. Every moral depravity in the US was pushed by Jews (abortion, sodomy, pornography, blasphemy, contraception, no-dault divorce, transgender ideology). Happened in Russia first, happening here now. The errors of Russia will spread throughout the world.

        Look it up.

      4. Eddie, it’s a sad truth to realize, but it makes utter sense.

        – The majority of people on Earth are not Catholic.
        – And the majority of people on Earth are lukewarm.

        The second is the biggest fault. They simply don’t care.

        They prefer simple peaceful comfort instead of the Truth. In daily life and psychologically.

        In ANY other transaction of life, if you don’t put in the work to find out where your investments are going, what you are voting for, what you are spending money on, what it takes to get into your career, what you need for your retirement… etc. etc. you OBVIOUSLY lose out.

        It is no different than taking the time to find out what happens after death and preparing for death. Something that we all know is coming. Something more than just leaving a will of what happens to your leftovers and property on Earth. But people don’t want to think about it. It disturbs them. They don’t know if they can be certain of the Truth. They see contradictions around them, and just give up. Too complicated. They think they are acting humble by assuming they can’t do it, and judge others as being similarly uncapable. So they don’t think about it. And they do nothing. Why should such labor be rewarded when they did not even care to preserve the oil for their lanterns?

        Then there is the natural charity we do for others. And I don’t mean almsgiving. I mean warning someone who is being wicked about what they are doing. Or at the very least preventing evil politically, for all the good that voting does.

        If you fail to warn a wicked man about his wickedness, then at the Final Judgment, when he is being condemned for his wickedness, he will also bear witness against you for failing to warn him or prevent him from doing what is wicked. He has nothing further to lose, other than to lash out at you, and drag you to Hell with him. And what testimony then will you give to the Judge? What the wicked man accuses you of would be true.

        Many people do this. Charity has grown cold. The only difference is that today, it is worse, because vice has been elevated as virtue. And properly judging others has been called a vice.

        Throughout our life, there are a great many people we’ll meet and know, who we will fail to admonish because we want to preserve peace and friendship. I’m just as guilty of this. When many of these go to Hell, even if we did do our duty to try and warn or convert them, they will still turn around and accuse us of not doing enough.

        And they will be right! We are our brother’s keepers. And we will see how FAR away from perfection we are. There is a price to pay, and it will either be eternal or temporary. It is not about you accomplishing their conversion, the result does not matter, only that you cannot be blamed or found an accomplice for their failures.

        But I have good news for you.

        You, at least, do care. You’ve got that in your favor.

        And another thing. You, at least worry. You’ve got that in your favor. Count it a blessing. Instead of despairing, let it make you more humble and tell God that you alone cannot do anything, ONLY HIS GRACE can make you good. And ONLY HIS MERCY AND LOVE will save you. Not anything you can do on your own. Acknowledge your TOTAL DEPENDENCE on Him, and lower yourself. Trust that despite how fallen you are, there is NOTHING preventing Him from saving you other than your own despair and rejection of His unfathomable Mercy. If you tell yourself that God will not do this for you, then you do not know Him.

        Console yourself at least that there were men such as King David – an adulterer, a murderer – yet God loved him, because God returned the love David had for him.

        In the same way, imagine having your own child. And imagine that you child committed all manner of vice. But if there is one thing that child did not do, it was to despise you, his father. That despite it all, that child still always loved you and was ashamed of what they were whenever they remembered you. And that child never blamed you for their failings. That child always defended your name when people spoke ill of you, and when they tried to make you responsible for their failure.

        And at the last that child approaches you towards the very end, and begs forgiveness and help. Would not your heart be moved for them? Like the prodigal son, the Father completely forgot whatever they’d done and would rush out to embrace them and bring them in!

        Likewise, it is exactly the same here. Do not think of your faults as any barrier to loving God, and God returning that love to you in equal kind. Just do everything you can to love Him more and more! Even if it is imperfect! Even if you do not uncover or learn every Catholic Truth there is to know about Him. Simply love the Truth itself. And Love it in a way that you try your best to know what the Truth is. There will even be pagans in Heaven whom God by His own decision has saved, because despite never knowing the Faith, they loved truth enough to dedicate their lives to its pursuit and practiced humility.

        So love the Truth, which is God Himself, and make it a habit of sharing that Truth with those around you. That is all. So simple. But the hardest part is to trust that the Truth loves you even more than you can imagine, and t abandon ourselves to His Providence, knowing that despite how far we fall, He will come to us and lead us out.

      5. I posted a longer reply but it seems to have vanished…look into Our Lady’s promise to ‘assist at death with the graces necessary for salvation” made to Lucia at Fatima all those who made the First Five Saturdays devotion. And keep up the struggle! The greatest saints carried the heaviest crosses!

  3. We have hope in purgatory, but still,
    How narrow is the gate, and strait is the way that leadeth to life: and few there are that find it! Mt 7:14

  4. In CS Lewis’s The Great Divorce, there is a scene where a theologian/pastor tour Paradise, and says that it doesn’t match up with his theories, and this can’t be right. He goes back on the bus to Hell. Others cannot stand the hyper reality of Paradise, and likewise get back on the bus to Hell.

    While obviously fiction, there are some things to think about. What will WE say when the Judge calls our name? How will WE respond?

    1. The Council of Trent has declared that we cannot have on earth certitude of our predestination without a special revelation. Aside from this special revelation no man can know if he will persevere in good works to the end. Nevertheless there are signs of predestination which give a kind of moral certitude that one will persevere. The Fathers, especially St. Chrysostom, St. Gregory the Great, St. Bernard, St. Anselm, have enumerated certain of these signs, following the directions of Scripture.

      Eight signs of predestination.

      First, a good life;
      secondly, the testimony of a good conscience;
      thirdly, patience in adversities for love of God;
      fourthly, relish for the light and the Word of God;
      fifthly, mercy toward those who suffer;
      sixthly, love of enemies;
      seventhly, humility;
      eighthly, special devotion to the Blessed Virgin

  5. The several books I’ve read regarding hell indicate approximately 1/5,000 make it to heaven. The data was from long ago and the world is likely more evil now. The point is, do as St. Paul says in Phil 2:12 “work out your salvation in fear and trembling” or in other words, DO your very best to get to heaven. Don’t despair, don’t be discouraged! Pray and take advantage of graces available to you. Look at the promises Mary has made for those who pray the Rosary! Go to confession regularly and attend frequent Mass. Read the Doctors of the Church.
    Christ said the gates of hell will not prevail against His church!

    1. The Blessed mother also made promises to those who pray the rosary daily, that they will not perish. Don’t despair.. pray!

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