Heaven and Hell

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Heaven and Hell
Popular, secular opinion seems to conclude either: 1) there is no after-life or 2) everyone and their pets go to heaven. There isn’t much talk about Hell, except to dismiss the possibility of anyone going there.
But one historical figure spoke very forcefully about the reality of Hell and the very real possibility of human beings spending eternity there. That person is none other than Jesus Christ, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity who became man. God did not dismiss Hell as either non-existent or not a threat. We should follow His example and learn what He taught.
Who will go to Heaven?
So after the Judgment, one will go to Heaven or Hell. Who goes to Heaven? How can I get there? The simple answer is that the souls of the just who are free of guilt and punishment will go to Heaven. But, we need to break that down a bit.
First, let’s be clear on one point: no one can earn their way into Heaven by their good works… no one. Salvation is a free gift from God. In Catholic terminology, the person who enters Heaven is said to have died in a state of sanctifying grace. Protestants sometimes refer to this as the grace of justification. And they are correct. The souls of the just are those who have been justified by grace through faith.
So the question is, who has been justified? This is where Catholic and non-Catholic teaching parts ways. We receive the grace of justification, that is, Sanctifying Grace, at our baptism when we are born anew from above
Two Types of Punishment Due to Sin
There are two types of punishment due to sin: * Eternal punishment * Temporal punishment
Eternal punishment, what we might call guilt, is forgiven and removed in the Sacrament of Confession. You carry it in when you enter the Confessional, but you leave without it when you receive Absolution. If you had lost Sanctifying Grace, you have received it again…...

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