Dear Elizabeth: I was a good boy until I reached 13; brought up Roman Catholic, and as often, a Dad who was so bright he was a perfectionist, and so you know what I went through! His orders: I was to grow up to be either a doctor (it would be good to specialize, or be a priest, for the family's sake), or a priest, and most do not know, a priest in the family virtually admits all of the family to heaven. Few know this today, but thought/taught then.As someone who is catholic and was raised in the faith, I find this truly offensive that the Pope would make a statement like this. It is making me seriously consider leaving the church. As long as popele believe in God and the holy trinity, why does it matter whether they believe as catholics, methodists, lutherans, etc? I think Benedict has gone too far with this statement and I do believe it is going to hurt the catholic church in the long run.
At 13 however, I stumbled and fell hard, and left the denomination, and throwing out the baby with the bathwater, I also left Christianity, because of the very same reason you note of above! I thought, because RCC is the only True Church instituted by Christ to give grace to anyone, and always by a priest, well, I do love this older lady so very much, and she knows so much about things I knew absolutely nothing about at 13 some years ago, when nearly all my age, knew little to nothing! Now you know I am over 100!
At 25, having had a very bold and sinful live to that date, mainly because of my having had much money, done all I could think to do, and was fully wide awake to the nothingness of life here, I was in the process of planning suicide in the new year.
The One I had left behind, knew before I became a teenager, I truly did love Him, and His Son, Christ, and He sent to me, a wild and crazy guy a few years ago, we were really good friends, but he was a new man, and began to tell me about Christ, One I thought I knew a lot about once, but that was picky memory, you know!