Denzinger EN 2780
[From the Allocution, "Acerbissimum vobiscum," Sept. 27, 1857]
2991 Dz 1640 We say nothing about that other decree in which, after completely despising the mystery, dignity, and sanctity of the sacrament of matrimony; after utterly ignoring and distorting its institution and nature; and after completely spurning the power of the Church over the same sacrament, it was proposed, according to the already condemned errors of heretics, and against the teaching of the Catholic Church, that marriage should be considered as a civil contract only, and that divorce, strictly speaking, should be sanctioned in various cases (see n.1767); and that all matrimonial cases should be deferred to lay tribunals and be judged by them (see n.1774); because no Catholic is ignorant or cannot know that matrimony is truly and properly one of the seven sacraments of the evangelical law, instituted by Christ the Lord, and that for that reason, there can be no marriage between the faithful without there being at one and the same time a sacrament, and that, therefore, any other union of man and woman among Christians, except the sacramental union, even if contracted under the power of any civil law, is nothing else than a disgraceful and death-bringing concubinage very frequently condemned by the Church, and, hence, that the sacrament can never be separated from the conjugal agreement (see n. 1773), and that it pertains absolutely to the power of the Church to discern those things which can pertain in any way to the same matrimony.
[From the Bull, "Ineffabilis Deus," Dec. 8, 1854]
2803 Dz 1641 . . . To the honor of the Holy and Undivided Trinity, to the glory and adornment of the Virgin Mother of God, to the exaltation of the Catholic Faith and the increase of the Christian religion, by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the blessed Apostles, Peter and Paul, and by Our own, We declare, pronounce, and define that the doctrine, which holds that the most Blessed Virgin Mary at the first instant of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of Almighty God, in virtue of the merits of Christ Jesus, the Savior of the human race, was preserved immaculate from all stain of original sin, has been revealed by God, and on this account must be firmly and constantly believed by all the faithful. Wherefore, if any should presume to think in their hearts otherwise than as it has been defined by Us, which God avert, let them know and understand that they are condemned by their own judgment; that they have suffered shipwreck in regard to faith, and have revolted from the unity of the Church; and what is more, that by their own act they subject themselves to the penalties established by law, if, what they think in their heart, they should to signify by word or writing or any other external means.
[From the Allocution, "Singulari quadem," Dec. 9, 1854]
Dz 1642 There are, besides, Venerable Brothers, certain men pre-eminent in learning, who confess that religion is by far the most excellent gift given by God to men, who, nevertheless, hold human reason at so high a value, exalt it so much, that they very foolishly think that it is to be held equal to religion itself. Hence, according to the rash opinion of these men, theological studies should be treated in the same manner as philosophical studies [see n.1708], although, nevertheless, the former are based on the dogmas of faith, than which nothing is more fixed and certain, while the latter are explained and illustrated by human reason, than which nothing is more uncertain, inasmuch as they vary according to the variety of natural endowments and are subject to numberless errors and delusions. Therefore, the authority of the Church being rejected, a very broad field lies open to every difficult and abstract question, and human reason, trusting too freely in its own weak strength, has fallen headlong into most shameful errors, which there is neither time nor inclination to mention here; for, they are well known to you and have been examined by you, and they have brought harm, and that very great, to both religious and civil affairs. Therefore, it is necessary to show to those men who exalt more than is just the strength of human reason that it (their attitude) is definitely contrary to those true words of the Doctor of the Gentiles: "If any man think himself to be something, whereas he is nothing, he deceiveth himself" (Ga 6,3). And so it is necessary to show them how great is their arrogance in examining the mysteries which God in His great goodness has deigned to reveal to us, and in pretending to understand and to comprehend them by the weakness and narrowness of the human mind, since those mysteries far exceed the power of our intellect which, in the words of the same Apostle, should be made captive unto the obedience of faith (cf. 2Co 10,5).
Dz 1643 And so, such followers, or rather worshipers of human reason, who set up reason as a teacher of certitude, and who promise themselves that all things will be fortunate under its leadership, have certainly forgotten how grave and terrible a wound was inflicted on human nature from the fault of our first parent; for darkness has spread over the mind, and the will has been inclined to evil. For this reason, the famous philosophers of ancient times, although they wrote many things very clearly, have nevertheless contaminated their teachings with most grave errors; hence that constant struggle which we experience in ourselves, of which the Apostle says: "I see a law in my members fighting against the law of my mind" (Rm 7 Rm 23)
Dz 1644 Now, since it is agreed that by the original sin propagated in all the posterity of Adam, the light of reason has been decreased; and since the human race has most miserably fallen from its pristine state of justice and innocence, who could think that reason is sufficient to attain to truth? Who, lest he fall and be ruined in the midst of such great dangers and in such great weakness of his powers, would deny that he needs the aid of a divine religion, and of heavenly grace for salvation? These aids, indeed, God most graciously bestows on those who ask for them by humble prayer, since it is written: "God resisteth the proud and giveth grace to the humble" ( Jas. Jc 4,6). Therefore, turning toward the Father, Christ our Lord affirmed that the deepest secrets of truth have not been disclosed "to the wise and prudent of this world," who take pride in their own talents and learning, and refuse to render obedience to faith, but rather (have been revealed) to humble and simple men who rely and rest on the oracle of divine faith (cf. Mt 11,25 Lc 10,21).
Dz 1645 You should inculcate this salutary lesson in the souls of those who exaggerate the strength of human reason to such an extent that they venture by its help to scrutinize and explain even mysteries, although nothing is more inept, nothing more foolish. Strive to withdraw them from such perversity of mind by explaining indisputably that nothing more excellent has been given by the providence of God to man than the authority of divine faith; that this is for us, as it were, a torch in the darkness, a guide which we follow to life; that this is absolutely necessary for salvation; for, "without faith . . . it is impossible to please God" (He 11,6) and "he that believeth not, shall be condemned" (Mc 16,16).
Dz 1646 Not without sorrow we have learned that another error, no less destructive, has taken possession of some parts of the Catholic world, and has taken up its abode in the souls of many Catholics who think that one should have good hope of the eternal salvation of all those who have never lived in the true Church of Christ [see n. 1717]. Therefore, they are wont to ask very often what will be the lot and condition after death of those who have not submitted in any way to the Catholic faith, and, by bringing forward most vain reasons, they make a response favorable to their false opinion. Far be it from Us, Venerable Brethren, to presume on the limits of the divine mercy which is infinite; far from Us, to wish to scrutinize the hidden counsel and "judgments of God" which are 'a great deep" (Ps 35,7) and cannot be penetrated by human thought. But, as is Our Apostolic duty, we wish your episcopal solicitude and vigilance to be aroused, so that you will strive as much as you can to drive from the mind of men that impious and equally fatal opinion, namely, that the way of eternal salvation can be found in any religion whatsoever. May you demonstrate with that skill and learning in which you excel, to the people entrusted to your care that the dogmas of the Catholic faith are in no wise opposed to divine mercy and justice.
2805 Dz 1647 For, it must be held by faith that outside the Apostolic Roman Church, no one can be saved; that this is the only ark of salvation; that he who shall not have entered therein will perish in the flood; but, on the other hand, it is necessary to hold for certain that they who labor in ignorance of the true religion, if this ignorance is invincible, are not stained by any guilt in this matter in the eyes of God. Now, in truth, who would arrogate so much to himself as to mark the limits of such an ignorance, because of the nature and variety of peoples, regions, innate dispositions, and of so many other things? For, in truth, when released from these corporeal chains "we shall see God as He is" (1Jn 3,2), we shall understand perfectly by how close and beautiful a bond divine mercy and justice are united; but, as long as we are on earth, weighed down by this mortal mass which blunts the soul, let us hold most firmly that, in accordance with Catholic teaching, there is "one God, one faith, one baptism" (Ep 4,5); it is unlawful to proceed further in inquiry.
Dz 1648 But, just as the way of charity demands, let us pour forth continual prayers that all nations everywhere may be converted to Christ; and let us be devoted to the common salvation of men in proportion to our strength, "for the hand of the Lord is not shortened" (Is 9,1) and the gifts of heavenly grace will not be wanting those who sincerely wish and ask to be refreshed by this light. Truths of this sort should be deeply fixed in the minds of the faithful, lest they be corrupted by false doctrines, whose object is to foster an indifference toward religion, which we see spreading widely and growing strong for the destruction of souls.
[From the Decree of the S.C. of the Index, 11, (15) June, 1855]
2811 Dz 1649 1 "Although faith is above reason, nevertheless no true dissension, no disagreement can ever be found between them, since both arise from the one same immutable source of truth, the most excellent and great God, and thus bring mutual help to each other" * [cf. n.1635 and 1799]
2812 Dz 1650 2. Reason can prove with certitude the existence of God, the spirituality of the soul, the freedom of man. Faith is posterior to revelation, and hence it cannot be conveniently alleged to prove the existence of God to an atheist, or to prove the spirituality and the freedom of the rational soul against a follower of naturalism and fatalism [cf. n.1622,1625 ].
2813 Dz 1651 3. The use of reason precedes faith and leads men to it by the help of revelation and of grace [cf. n. 1626 ].
2814 Dz 1652 4. The method which St. Thomas and St. Bonaventure and other scholastics after them used does not lead to rationalism, nor has it been the reason why philosophy in today's schools is falling into naturalism and pantheism. Therefore, it is not lawful to charge as a reproach against these doctors and teachers that they made use of this method, especially since the Church approves, or at least keeps silent.*
[From the Encyclical of the Holy Office, Aug. 4, 1856]
2823 Dz 1653 . . Already some responses on this subject have been given by the Holy See to particular cases, in which those experiments are condemned as illicit which are arranged for a purpose not natural, not honest, and not attained by proper means; therefore, in similar cases it was decreed on Wednesday, April 21, 1841: "The use of magnetism, as it is explained, is not permitted." Similarly, the Sacred Congregation decreed that certain books stubbornly disseminating errors of this kind should be condemned.
2824 But because, aside from particular cases, the use of magnetism in general had to be considered, by way of a rule therefore it was so stated on Wednesday, July 28, 1847: "When all error, soothsaying, explicit or implicit invocation of the demon is removed, the use of magnetism, i.e., the mere act of employing physical media otherwise licit, is not morally forbidden, provided it does not tend to an illicit end or to one that is in any manner evil. However, the application of principles and purely physical means to things and effects truly supernatural, in order to explain them physically, is nothing but deception altogether illicit and heretical."
2825 Dz 1654 Although by this general decree the lawfulness and unlawfulness in the use or misuse of magnetism were satisfactorily explained, nevertheless the wickedness of men grew to such an extent that neglecting the legitimate study of the science, pursuing rather the curious, with great loss to souls and detriment to civil society itself, they boast that they have discovered the principle of foretelling and divining. Thus, girls with the tricks of sleepwalking and of clear-gazing, as they call it, carried away by delusions and gestures not always modest, proclaim that they see the invisible, and they pretend with rash boldness to hold talks even about religion, to evoke the souls of the dead, to receive answers, to reveal the unknown and the distant, and to practice other superstitious things of that sort, intending to acquire great gain for themselves and for their masters through their divining. Therefore, in all these, whatever art or illusion they employ, since physical media are used for unnatural effects, there is deception altogether illicit and heretical, and a scandal against honesty of morals.*
[From the Brief, "Eximiam tuam" to Cardinal de Geissel. Archbishop of Cologne, June 15, 1857]
2828 Dz 1655 Not without sorrow are We especially aware that in these books that erroneous and most dangerous system of rationalism, often condemned by this Apostolic See, is particularly dominant; and likewise we know that in the same books these items among many others are found, which are not a little at variance with the Catholic Faith and with the true explanation of the unity of the divine substance in three distinct, eternal Persons. Likewise, we have found that neither better nor more accurate are the statements made about the mystery of the Incarnate Word, and about the unity of the divine Person of the Word in two natures, divine and human. We know that in the same books there is harm to the Catholic opinion and teaching concerning man, who is so composed of body and soul that the soul, and that rational, may of itself be the true and immediate form of the body. * And we are not unaware that in the same books those teachings are stated and defended which are plainly opposed to the Catholic doctrine about the supreme liberty of God, who l is free from any necessity whatsoever in creating things.
2829 Dz 1656 And also that extremely wicked and condemned doctrine which in Guenther's books rashly attributes the rights of a master both to human reason and philosophy, whereas they should be wholly handmaids, not masters in religious matters; and therefore all those things are disturbed which should remain most stable, not only concerning the distinction between science and faith, but also concerning the eternal immutability of faith, which is always one and the same, while philosophy and human studies are not always consistent, and are not immune to a multiple variety of errors.
2830 Dz 1657 In addition, the Holy Fathers are not held in that reverence which the canons of the Councils prescribe, and which these splendid lights of the Catholic Church so altogether deserve, nor does he refrain from the slurring remarks against Catholic Schools, which Our predecessor of cherished memory, PIUS VI, solemnly condemned [see n.1576].
2831 Dz 1658 Nor shall we pass over in silence that in Guenther's books "the sound form of speaking" is completely outraged, as if it were lawful to forget the words of the Apostle Paul (2Tm 1,13), or those which Augustine most earnestly advised: "It is right for us to speak according to a fixed rule, lest liberty with words give birth to an impious opinion, even about the things which are signified by them''* [see n.1714a].
[From the decree of the Sacred Office, Sept. 18, 1861, "they cannot be safely taught"]
2841 Dz 1659 1. Immediate knowledge of God, habitual at least, is essential to the human intellect, so much so that without it the intellect can know nothing, since indeed it is itself intellectual light.
2842 Dz 1660 2. That being which is in all things and without which we understand nothing, is the divine being.
2843 Dz 1661 3. Universals considered on the part of the thing are not really distinguished from God.
2844 Dz 1662 4. Congenital knowledge of God as being simply involves in an eminent way all other cognition, so that by it we hold as known implicitly all being, under whatever aspect it is knowable
2845 Dz 1663 5. All other ideas do not exist except as modifications of the idea by which God is understood as Being simply.
2846 Dz 1664 6. Created things exist in God as a part in the whole, not indeed in the formal whole, but in the infinite whole, the most simple, which puts its parts, as it were, without any division and diminution of itself outside itself.
2847 Dz 1665 7. Creation can be thus explained: God, by that special act by which He knows Himself, and wills Himself as distinct from a determined creature, man, for example, produces a creature.
[From the epistle, "Gravissimas inter,', to the Archbishop of Munich-Freising, Dec. 11, 1862]
Dz 1666 Amidst the terrible anguish by which we are pressed on all sides in the great restlessness and iniquity of these times, we are sorely grieved to learn that in various regions of Germany are found some men, even Catholics, who, betraying sacred theology as well as philosophy, do not hesitate to introduce a certain freedom of teaching and writing hitherto unheard of in the Church, and to profess openly and publicly new and altogether reprehensible opinions, and to disseminate them among the people.
Dz 1667 Hence, We were affected with no light grief, Venerable Brother, when the sad message reached Us that the priest, James Frohschammer, teacher of philosophy in the Academy at Munich, was displaying, beyond all the rest, freedom of teaching and writing in this manner, and was defending these most dangerous errors in his works that have been published. Therefore, with no delay We commanded Our Congregation appointed for censuring books to weigh with great diligence and care the particular volumes which are circulating under the name of the same priest, Frohschammer, and to report all findings to Us. These volumes written in German have the title: Introductio in Philophiam, De Libertate scientiae, Athenaeum, the first of which was published in the year 1858, the second in the year 1861, but the third at the turn of this year 1862, by the Munich press. And so the said Congregation . . . judged that the author in many matters does not think correctly, and that his doctrine is far from Catholic truth.
2850 Dz 1668 And this, especially in a twofold direction; the first, indeed, because the author attributes such powers to human reason which are not at all appropriate to reason itself; and the second, because he grants to the same reason such liberty of judging all things, and of always venturing anything, that the rights of the Church itself, its office and authority are completely taken away.
2851 Dz 1669 For the author teaches especially that philosophy, if a right notion of it is held, cannot only perceive and understand those Christian dogmas which natural reason has in common with faith (as, for instance, a common object of perception), but also those which particularly and properly affect Christian religion and faith, namely, the supernatural end of man, and all that is related to it; and also, that the most holy mystery of the Incarnation of the Lord belongs to the province of human reasoning and philosophy; and that reason, when this object is presented to it, can by its own proper principles, arrive at those (dogmas) with understanding. But, although the author makes some distinction between these (natural) dogmas and those (Christian), and assigns these latter with less right to reason, nevertheless, he clearly and openly teaches that these (Christian) dogmas also are contained among those which constitute the true and proper matter of science or philosophy.
2852 Therefore, according to the teaching of the same author, it can and should be definitely concluded that, even in the deepest mysteries of divine wisdom and goodness, nay, even of Its free will, granted that the object of revelation be posited, reason can of itself, no longer on the principle of divine authority, but on its own natural principles and strength, reach understanding or certitude. How "false" and "erroneous" this teaching of the author is, there is no one, even though lightly imbued with the rudiments of Christian doctrine, who does not see immediately and clearly understand.
2853 Dz 1670 For, if these worshipers of philosophy were protecting the true and sole principles and rights of reason and philosophic study, they should certainly be honored with merited praise. Indeed, true and sound philosophy has its own most noble position, since it is the characteristic of such philosophy to search diligently into truth, and to cultivate and illustrate rightly and carefully human reason, darkened as it is by the guilt of the first man, but by no means extinct; and to perceive, to understand well, to advance the object of its cognition and many truths; and to demonstrate, vindicate, and defend, by arguments sought from its own principles, many of those truths, such as the existence, nature, attributes of God which faith also proposes for our belief; and, in this way, to build a road to those dogmas more correctly held by faith, and even to those more profound dogmas which can be perceived by faith alone at first, so that they may in some way be understood by reason. The exacting and most beautiful science of true philosophy ought, indeed, to do such things and to be occupied with them. If the learned men in the academies of Germany would make efforts to excel in this, in proportion to that peculiar well-known inclination of that nation to cultivate the more serious and exacting studies, their zeal would be approved and commended by Us, because they would be turning to the utility and progress of sacred things that which they have learned for their own uses.
2854 Dz 1671 But, in truth, We can never tolerate that in so grave a matter as this surely is, that all things be rashly confused, and that reason should seize upon and disturb those things which pertain also to faith, since the limits beyond which reason in its own right has never advanced nor can advance, are fixed and well-known to all. To dogmas of this sort pertain particularly and openly all those which treat of the supernatural elevation of man and his supernatural intercourse with God, and which are known to have been revealed for this purpose. And surely, since these dogmas are above nature, the' cannot, therefore, be reached by natural reason and natural principles. For, indeed, reason by its own natural principles can never be made fit to handle scientifically dogmas of this sort. But, if those men dare to assert this rashly, let them know that they are withdrawing, not merely from the opinion of a few learned persons, but from the common and never changing doctrine of the Church.
2855 Dz 1672 For, from the divine Scriptures and from the tradition of the Holy Fathers, it is agreed indeed that the existence of God and many other truths were known (cf. Rm 1) by the natural light of reason, even by those who had not yet received the faith, but that God alone manifested those more hidden dogmas when He wished to make known "the mystery, which had been hidden from ages and generations" (Col 1,26). And in such a way indeed that, "at sundry times and in diverse manners He had formerly spoken to the fathers by the prophets, last of all . . . He might speak to us by His Son, . . . by whom He also made the world" (He 1,1 f.). For "no man hath seen God at any time: the only-begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared Him" (Jn 1,18). Therefore, the Apostle who testifies that the gentiles knew God by those things which were made, discoursing about "grace and truth" which "came by Jesus Christ" (Jn 1,17), says, "We speak of the wisdom of God in a mystery, a wisdom which is hidden . . . which none of the princes of this world know . . . But to us God hath revealed them by His Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea the deep things of God. For, what man knoweth the things of man but the spirit of a man that is in him? So the things also that are of God, no man knoweth but the Spirit of God" (1Co 2,7 f).
2856 Dz 1673 Adhering to these and other almost innumerable divine texts, the Holy Fathers, in transmitting the teaching of the Church, have constantly taken care to distinguish the knowledge of divine things which is common to all by the power of natural intelligence, from the knowledge of those things which is received on faith through the Holy Spirit; and they have continuously taught that through this (faith) those mysteries are revealed to us in Christ which transcend not only human philosophy but even the angelic natural intelligence, and which, although they are known through divine revelation and have been accepted by faith, nevertheless, remain still covered by the sacred veil of faith itself, and wrapped in an obscuring mist as long as we are absent from the Lord * in this mortal life.
2857 From all this, it is clear that the proposition of Frohschammer is wholly foreign to the teaching of the Catholic Church, since he does not hesitate to assert that all the dogmas of the Christian religion without discrimination are the object of natural science or philosophy, and that human reason, cultivated so much throughout history, provided these dogmas have been proposed to reason itself as an object, can from its own natural powers and principle, arrive at the true understanding concerning all, even the more hidden dogmas [see n. 1709].
2858 Dz 1674 But now, in the said writings of this author another opinion prevails which is plainly opposed to the teaching and understanding of the Catholic Church. For, he attributes that freedom to philosophy which must be called not the freedom of science but an utterly reprobate and intolerable license of philosophy. For, having made a certain distinction between a philosopher and philosophy, he attributes to a "philosopher" the right and duty of submitting himself to the authority which he himself has approved as true, but he denies both (right and duty) to philosophy, so that taking no account of revealed doctrine he asserts that it (philosophy) ought never and can never submit itself to authority.
2859 And this might be tolerable and perhaps admissible, if it were said only about the right which philosophy has to use its own principles or methods, and its own conclusions, as also the other sciences, and if its liberty consisted in employing this right in such a way that it would admit nothing into itself which had not been acquired by it under its own conditions, or was foreign to it. But, such true freedom of philosophy must understand and observe its own limitations. For, it will never be permitted either to a philosopher, or to philosophy, to say anything contrary to those things which divine revelation and the Church teaches, or to call any of them into doubt because (he or it) does not understand them, or to refuse the judgment which the authority of the Church decides to bring forward concerning some conclusion of philosophy which was hitherto free.
2860 Dz 1675 It also happens that the same author so bitterly, so rashly fights for the liberty, or rather the unbridled license of philosophy that he does not at all fear to assert that the Church not only ought never to pay any attention to philosophy, but should even tolerate the errors of philosophy itself, and leave it to correct itself [see n. 1711]; from which it happens that philosophers necessarily share in this liberty of philosophy and so even they are freed from all law. Who does not see how forcefully an opinion and teaching of this sort of Frohschammer's should be rejected, reproved, and altogether condemned? For the Church, from her divine institution, has the duty both to hold most diligently to the deposit of faith, whole and inviolate, and to watch continually with great earnestness over the salvation of souls, and with the greatest care to remove and eliminate all those things which can be opposed to faith or can in any way endanger the salvation of souls
2861 Dz 1676 Therefore, the Church, by the power entrusted to it by its divine Founder, has not only the right, but particularly the duty of not tolerating but of proscribing and condemning all errors, if the integrity of faith and the salvation of souls so demand; and on every philosopher who wishes to be a son of the Church, and also on philosophy, it lays this duty--never to say anything against those things which the Church teaches, and to retract those about which the Church has warned them Moreover, We proclaim and declare that a doctrine which teaches the contrary is entirely erroneous and especially harmful to faith itself, to the Church and its authority.
[From the Encyclical, "Quanto conficiamur moerore," to the bishops of Italy, Aug. 10, 1863]
2865 Dz 1677 And here, beloved Sons and Venerable Brothers, We should mention again and censure a very grave error in which some Catholics are unhappily engaged, who believe that men living in error, and separated from the true faith and from Catholic unity, can attain eternal life [see n. 1717]. Indeed, this is certainly quite contrary to Catholic teaching.
2866 It is known to Us and to you that they who labor in invincible ignorance of our most holy religion and who, zealously keeping the natural law and its precepts engraved in the hearts of all by God, and being ready to obey God, live an honest and upright life, can, by the operating power of divine light and grace, attain eternal life, since God who clearly beholds, searches, and knows the minds, souls, thoughts, and habits of all men, because of His great goodness and mercy, will by no means suffer anyone to be punished with eternal torment who has not the guilt of deliberate sin.
2867 But, the Catholic dogma that no one can be saved outside the Catholic Church is well-known; and also that those who are obstinate toward the authority and definitions of the same Church, and who persistently separate themselves from the unity of the Church, and from the Roman Pontiff, the successor of PETER, to whom "the guardianship of the vine has been entrusted by the Savior," * cannot obtain eternal salvation.
Dz 1678 But, God forbid that the sons of the Catholic Church ever in any way be hostile to those who are not joined with us in the same bonds of faith and love; but rather they should always be zealous to seek them out and aid them, whether poor, or sick, or afflicted with any other burdens, with all the offices of Christian charity; and they should especially endeavor to snatch them from the darkness of error in which they unhappily lie, and lead them back to Catholic truth and to the most loving Mother the Church, who never ceases to stretch out her maternal hands lovingly to them, and to call them back to her bosom so that, established and firm in faith, hope, and charity, and "being fruitful in every good work" (Col 1,10), they may attain eternal salvation.
Denzinger EN 2780