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Vatican Confirms Atheists Still Going To Hell, Despite Pope Francis Remarks

27/05/2013 10:27 BST | Updated 31/05/2013 12:51 BST
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ROME, ITALY - MAY 26: Pope Francis celebrates Mass and administers the Sacrament of Holy Communion to 16 children at the Roman parish of Saint Elisabeth and Zechariah on May 26, 2013 in Rome, Italy. Pope Francis made his first Pastoral visit to a parish as Bishop of Rome early on Sunday for the feast of the Holy Trinity. (Photo by Franco Origlia/Getty Images)

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The Vatican has clarified that atheists will still go to hell if they reject God, after Pope Francis broke with tradition to deliver a homily stating non-believers who do good will be redeemed through Jesus.

The Pope's words made headlines around the world after he gave an unprepared speech in which he emphasised the importance of “doing good” as a principle which unites all humanity.

After international media attention, the Vatican attempted clarify how exactly one gets in to heaven, with Rev. Thomas Rosica, a Vatican spokesman, saying that people who know about the Catholic church “cannot be saved” if they “refuse to enter her or remain in her.”

That is, atheists are still going to hell.

However there was still hope for the sinful among us, as “every man or woman, whatever their situation, can be saved. Even non-Christians can respond to this saving action of the Spirit. No person is excluded from salvation simply because of so-called original sin.”