Response of Colin B. Donovan STL, Lay Apologist at EWTN to Warren Goddard
Mr. Goddard has created a strawman which he then demolishes. The doctrine of invincible ignorance remains, as it must. It is as much a part of the Tradition as is Extra Ecclesia - whose meaning was well expounded by Cardinal Ratzinger in Dominus Iesus of 2000. What is important is God's knowledge of the culpability, not man's assumption of it.
Lionel: I , Lionel, accept the doctrine of invincible ignorance(Feeneyite) and the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus( Feeneyite).
I reject the new doctrine of invincible ignorance ( Cushingite) and the new version of outside the Church there is no salvation ( Cushingite).
For me invincible ignorance ( Feeneyite) refers to a hypothetical case it is not a visible and known person in 2017. Similarly there are no known exceptions of invincible ignorance to the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus( Feeneyite) in 2017.This is reality.Invisible cases cannot be visible exceptions to all needing to be members of the Church for salvation in 2017.
Also there could be no known case in the past of people visible in Heaven who are there without the baptism of water. Nor could any one know in the past of someone who will be saved without being a member of the Catholic Church.
Colin B.Donovan affirms invincible ignorance( Cushingite) and outside the church there is no salvation( Cushingite). So his reasoning is irrational and upon this irrationality( invisible cases are visible and they are exceptions to EENS) he supports a new theology.
Without this irrational interpretation I can affirm both invincible ignorance and the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus.
Cardinal Ratzinger was a Cushingite.he was in magisterial heresy. He was opposing and contradicting the magisterium of the past. He confirmed it in March 2016 when the said that there was a development with Vatican Council II (Cushingite) and EENS(Cushingite) was no more like it was(EENS Feeenyite) for the 16th century missionaries.
However the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus defined by three Church Councils indicates all non Catholics are on the way to Hell, they are culpable for eternal death with Original Sin and mortal sins committed in this state, unless before death on earth they formally enter the Church. Vatican Council II ( AG 7) has the same message when it says all need faith and baptism for salvation.
Similarly the Catechism of the Catholic Church(1257) says that the Church knows of no means to eternal beatitude other than the baptism of water.For me there are no known exceptions of someone saved outside the Church, since 'God is not limited to the Sacraments'. So CCC 1257 affirms the strict interpretation of the dogma EENS and there are no exceptions.
So I am affirming Vatican Council II, EENS, the Catechism of the Catholic Church and invincible ignorance all interpreted with Feeneyism instead of the irrational Cushingism which is magisterial.I am not in schism or heresy.
Pius IX points to that, and so does the Church today.
Lionel: It depends upon how Pius IX is interpreted; with Feeneyism ( invisible cases of being saved in invincible ignorance are not visible exceptions to EENS) or withCushingism( invisible cases of invincible ignorance are visible exceptions to EENS).
We no longer attribute formal moral culpability simply by knowing someone has materially heard the truth of the faith. Hearing and knowing, and thus moral culpability are different things. Both moral theology and canon law (including ALL pre-Vatican II teaching) acknowledges this. It's of the essence of Pius IX's statement, as well, that there are both physical and moral impossibilities to observance of positive law - whether materially not having heard the Gospel, or morally being strongly disposed against it by family or religious prejudices.
Lionel: This is all theoretical and speculative. The point is that there are no exceptions to the dogma EENS, there never were any, this was a mistake of the magisterium.
Many such people eventually come into the Church, when they realize, as Ven. Fulton Sheen often noted, they did not so much disbelieve in the Church as they disbelieved in a bad caricature of the Church.
But, yes, a time comes that acquaintance with the Gospel and with the Church overcomes even the moral obstacles of conscience and becomes first natural belief in the claims of Christ and the Church, and through baptism, supernatural faith.
Lionel: This may be true but it is not relevant to the issue which is: invincible ignorance was never an exception to the dogma EENS. To assume that it is is false philosophy and theology.
Lumen Gentium 16( invinicble ignorance) is not an exception to the dogma EENS for me, it would be an exception to EENS for the two popes and the EWTN apologists
When that time comes, the individual's own conscience calls them to adhere to the truth and they can no longer claim any obstacle, whether from physical or moral causes.
Lionel: This is speaking in general and with good will. We have no problem with this.However when Warren Goddard reasons that invincible ignorance is not an exception to the dogma EENS he is correct. There are no practical exceptions to EENS known to Colin B. Donovan. He cannot name any one over the last ten years or this year, who has been saved without 'faith and baptism' or will be saved as such. There are no practical exceptions! So how can he imply that being saved in invincible ignorance is an exception or even relevant to EENS? - Lionel Andrades
Mr. Colin B. Donovan, STL
Vice President for Theology
EWTN Global Catholic Network
5817 Old Leeds Road
Irondale, AL 35210
May God Bless You,
EWTN Viewer Response
Colin B. Donovan, STL is Vice President for Theology at EWTN. A layman, he has the Licentiate in Sacred Theology, with a specialization in moral theology, from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum) in Rome, where he wrote on the Donation of the Spouses in Marriage. He earned the BTh from the Seminary of Christ the King in Mission, British Columbia, Canada and the BA in Biological Science from Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois. Prior to coming to EWTN in 1995, he taught Theology at Aquinas College in Nashville.