Everyday, roughly 150,000 people die. That's a huge number, 150,000. So that means that if everyday roughly 150,000 people die, roughly 150,000 souls makes their journey from this life to the next.
How many of those souls are thrown into Hell?
If roughly 150,000 people die everyday, then that boils down to roughly 100 die every minute.
So, lets say 'Christine' just passed away and has made her journey to the afterlife.
'Christine' was a nice girl. She liked kittens, she helped out her local cat rescue and gave money to her local animal shelter.
But 'Christine' was just thrown into Hell.
'Christine' had no religion to speak of. She was just a nice person.
But right now 'Christine' is burning in Hell.
"But Traddy!", you say "God is merciful. He wouldn't throw a nice person like Christine into Hell!"
Well, in the post Vatican II world, where black is white and vice versa, that's most likely what you've come to understand about God and his mercy. But the reality is quite different.
Jesus Christ, our savior, mentioned Hell 90 times throughout the Bible.
He mentioned Heaven just 27 times. So clearly he had an agenda.
When Saint Paul wrote his 12th Epistle to the Phillipians he said: "...with fear and trembling work out your salvation."
Fear and trembling?
Was Saint Paul frightened that he would end up in Hell?
And you should be too.
Catholics today have lost their sense of sin, and along with it, their fear of Hell. Hell and sin is not only barely mentioned in the Novus Ordo church, preaching about this doctrine of the church today is actually frowned upon.
People don't like to hear about it. It makes them uncomfortable. It causes them to squirm in the pews. We all know that all you have to do is be 'nice'.
'Nice' isn't mentioned in the Bible, folks. Look it up.
But Hell is.
By our savior, Jesus Christ.
If Jesus Christ is our savior, what did he come to save us from? Bad people? Bad movies? Bad curry?
He came to save us from Hell. And yes, His mercy is infinite - on this side of the aisle. When we cross over to the next life and we find ourselves in His presence for our judgement, He is no longer merciful. He's not our cosmic buddy who wants to hug us like the new age movement in the church would like you to believe. He is the Just Judge. The time for mercy and for being forgiven "...seventy times seven." as Matthew wrote in chapter 18 is over. Now it's time to face the music for our actions.
So now, lets go back to 'Christine'. She's been burning in Hell for a few minutes now. She has been cursing God. Damning Him. For her pain and suffering which is what she deserves, she is cursing God. While unimaginable pain and suffering is coursing through her body she is cursing God. And it won't end anytime soon. It will go on for eternity.
How long is eternity? Eternity means forever. If we get a pebble in our shoe, we stop everything to get rid of it right away. Because we don't like it, it's uncomfortable. But 'Chrisitne' will suffer endlessly, with no hope of parole. She will burn forever. Tonight when you go to sleep, she will be burning.
Tomorrow when you get up she will still be burning.
In the 66th chapter of Isaias' prophecy we are told "... And they shall go out, and see the carcasses of the men that have transgressed against me: their worm shall not die, and their fire shall not be quenched: and they shall be a loathsome sight to all flesh." In like fashion, Saint Mark wrote "...And if thy foot scandalize thee, cut it off. It is better for thee to enter lame into life everlasting, than having two feet, to be cast into the hell of unquenchable fire: Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not extinguished."
You see, in Hell, there is no peace. No love. Only hatred and suffering. Remember when I said 'Christine' is cursing God? It's because that is all that is left for her in her desperation. Our prayers cannot help poor 'Christine' who is "...consigned to flames of woe", as Mozart's Requiem said. 'Christine' will suffer for all eternity. Dante correctly placed above the gates of Hell this motto: "Abandon hope, all ye who enter here". For there is no hope, no peace, no love, nothing but torments and pain.
Why am I telling you this? To save you. It is not me being mean, it is not fear-mongering, it is the truth, as revealed to us by our Lord and savior. We hear the truth so rarely in the Novus Ordo church, that I have to tell you, because they won't say it. You probably don't want to hear this either, because you have grown up in a church that tells you it's ok to pick and choose for yourself what you believe.
You have been commanded to do certain things in a certain way. If by your actions you do not follow God's will, then you will be "consigned to flames of woe" for all eternity. You make the choice to follow God or not. Noone else to blame. You. You either do it or you don't.
And let's set someting else straight about God. God doesn't throw you into Hell. You throw yourself. You make the decisions in your life. You have been given free will to do as you please. Most choose unwisely, I'm afraid.
It's that simple.
You see, God HATES sin. He hates when you sin. He hates when I sin. Sin cuts off our souls from the grace of Almighty God. It slowly pinches off our relationship with him until it is no more. And then if we die in sin, we go to Hell. That's it. Hell.
But if we are lucky enough to work out our salvation, and die in a state of grace, we live forever with Him in Heaven, we will reach our goal.
Well, it SHOULD be our goal. Getting to Heaven. That should be everyone's primary goal, and getting our loved ones there should be our goal as well.
We are called to do so, to help our friends and neighbors find the narrow path. That's what "love thy neighbor" means. Not giving them that cup of sugar they want to borrow, or the hedgeclippers. Help them get to Heaven. Keep them out of Hell, that's love.
But it's not easy, I know that. It's hard enough to find the path ourselves and stay put. But that's what we must do.
And 'Christine' continues to burn in the everlasting, the unquenchable fire.
What can you do that 'Christine' didn't?
Well for starters, you can go to Mass every Sunday. On time. If Mass begins at 9, don't show up at 9:10. And don't leave before the priest does, either. Show respect to our Lord and stick it out. It's really not that tough.
Get to confession. Remember how I mentioned God forgives infinitely on this side of the aisle? Take advantage of it. I understand most Catholics today believe they are living saints, with much adoration due to them, but let me give you another sobering dose of reality.
You aren't. Get yourself to confession. The pitifully short lines for the confessional shows that there is much more other than your salvation on your minds. Knock it off. Go to confession. Often.
Follow his Commandments.
Love one another as he loves us. Remember who came to earth and who died upon the cross for our sins because we could not possibly pay the price of our transgressions ourselves. He had to pay the price. He suffered, was tortured, and died a terrible, unimaginably painful death so that you and I could enter the gates. Don't screw up the opportunity He has presented you with.
This is what he Church teaches us. More important, this is what Christ teaches us through His church. Take advantage before it's too late.
And 'Christine'? Well, she continues to burn in Hell. Please do all you can to void her fate.
God bless you.