What I think doesn't matter. What I am taught by the Church that Jesus says is the pillar and ground of Truth matters.<quoted text>
Now, you are being truthful. They are mostly taught to be pew sitters and hang on the words of the the hierarchy. I probably need to rethink this some. I am not a catholic and have no intention or ever becoming one But I do remember that they once read the scripture only in Latin. That alone proves that many catholics do not have a high regard for truth as given by God. Many trust in the hierarchy and rituals.
I think some rituals and objects such as the cross and the rosary beads can be a good way to stay in touch but it is usually not very effective in constraining the heart mind and soul. For that we need an inner working of the Spirit.
I once was sharing the gospel with a with a worker when he cut me short. He said I was baptized so I am saved. Turns out he was sprinkled by a catholic priest as baby and believed he was saved but has no experience in any church. I bet you believe he is saved-am I right?
That guy you mentioned was saved at the moment he was baptized. If he would have died shortly after without committing a mortal sin and be unrepentant, he would have gone to heaven.
If he has not continued with his faith, he probably has no chance. I am using my words carefully because with God anything is possible. He might repent, confess his sins, before he dies and be okay.
The Church teaches you were saved, you are being saved, and you hope to saved.
You are saved by Grace working through love. The Apostles left us the way of salvation. It is a journey.
Even a Pope does not for sure he will be saved. If he dies in a state of mortal sin, he could joining the rest of the crowd in hell.
But I assume being such a holy man, he is like Paul, He knows nothing at this time that would keep him from being saved.