Friday, July 8, 2016
Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 161 – Part II.
(Youcat answer - repeated) Hell is the condition of everlasting separation from God, the absolute absence of love.
A deepening through CCC
(CCC 1035) The teaching of the Church affirms the existence of hell and its eternity. Immediately after death the souls of those who die in a state of mortal sin descend into hell, where they suffer the punishments of hell, "eternal fire" (Cf. DS 76; 409; 411; 801; 858; 1002; 1351; 1575; Paul VI, CPG § 12). The chief punishment of hell is eternal separation from God, in whom alone man can possess the life and happiness for which he was created and for which he longs.
Reflecting and meditating
(Youcat comment) Someone who consciously and with full consent dies in serious sin, without repenting, and refuses God’s merciful, forgiving love forever, excludes himself from communion with God and the saints. We do not know whether anyone at the moment of death can look absolute Love in the face and still say No. But our freedom makes that decision possible. Jesus warns us again and again not to separate ourselves definitively from him by shutting our hearts against the need of his brothers and sisters: “Depart from me, you cursed… As you did it not to one of the least of these, you did it not to me”(Mt 25:41, 45).
(CCC 1037) God predestines no one to go to hell (Cf. Council of Orange II (529): DS 397; Council of Trent (1547):1567); for this, a willful turning away from God (a mortal sin) is necessary, and persistence in it until the end. In the Eucharistic liturgy and in the daily prayers of her faithful, the Church implores the mercy of God, who does not want "any to perish, but all to come to repentance" (2 Pet 3:9): Father, accept this offering from your whole family. Grant us your peace in this life, save us from final damnation, and count us among those you have chosen [Roman Missal, EP I (Roman Canon) 88].