Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI gave an unusually critical and rare interview with the Italian newspaper Avvenire, underscoring the damage to the Church’s missionary life that followed in the wake of Vatican II and the subsequent weakening of the Church’s teaching on baptism and no salvation outside the Church.
LifeSiteNews, Interview with Avvenire: Pope Benedict reminds us of the formerly indispensable Catholic conviction of the possibility of the loss of eternal salvation, or that people go to hell:
The missionaries of the 16th century were convinced that the unbaptized person is lost forever. After the [Second Vatican] Council, this conviction was definitely abandoned. The result was a two-sided, deep crisis. Without this attentiveness to the salvation, the Faith loses its foundation.
He also speaks of a “profound evolution of Dogma” with respect to the Dogma that there is no salvation outside the Church. This purported change of dogma has led, in the pope’s eyes, to a loss of the missionary zeal in the Church – “any motivation for a future missionary commitment was removed.” Pope Benedict asks the piercing question that arose after this palpable change of attitude of the Church: “Why should you try to convince the people to accept the Christian faith when they can be saved even without it?” As to the other consequences of this new attitude in the Church, the Catholics themselves, in Benedict’s eyes, are less attached to their Faith: If there are those who can save their souls with other means, “why should the the Christian be bound to the necessity of the Christian Faith and its morality?” asked the pope. And he concludes: “But if Faith and Salvation are not any more interdependent, even Faith becomes less motivating.” Read full interview here.