Am I Going to Hell?

So I led a retreat about a year ago and was reminded of a moment on the weekend when we talked in a Question Box session about purgatory. I took a survey of the room.

“How many people here think that they are going to heaven?”

Not one hand went up and then sheepishly one person dared to say that she merited heaven.

“OK, how many people think that they’re going to hell?”

Immediately about 6 hands went up without hesitation.

I slumped in my chair. Do we all think we’re doomed? Is this how little we think of God’s love?

Now I suppose, I don’t think I merit heaven either–at least not immediately, which I think gives a lot of credence to the church’s teaching on purgatory. Innately, perhaps we all don’t think that we are perfect, but I also don’t think that many of us reallythink that God is going to dump us off to eternal damnation either (although I don’t doubt that some of us can indeed choose to ignore God’s mercy and refuse to change our own ways in response to that and end up there).

So I’d like to throw this out there to y’all…

What do you think about heaven and hell? Purgatory? Where do you think you’ll end up?

Join the Conversation


  1. Oh my. It is so very very very hard for me to imagine hell. I think it exists, I am just not sure that anyone is there.I wish I had more time to spend on this question!


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