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Dear catholic.com visitors: This website from Catholic Answers, with all its many resources, is the world's largest source of explanations for Catholic beliefs and practices. A fully independent, lay-run, 501(c)(3) ministry that receives no funding from the institutional Church, we rely entirely on the generosity of everyday people like you to keep this website going with trustworthy , fresh, and relevant content. If everyone visiting this month gave just $1, catholic.com would be fully funded for an entire year. Do you find catholic.com helpful? Please make a gift today. SPECIAL PROMOTION FOR NEW MONTHLY DONATIONS! Thank you and God bless.

Do those who die in mortal sin get a second chance to repent?

Question:

Does the Catholic church teach that someone dying with mortal sin always goes to hell? With so many unexpected deaths, accidents, there must be a second chance to say "I’m sorry."

Answer:

At the last moment it may be possible to repent. But some people die so quickly that they may not have that moment. If a person dies as God’s enemy—which is what we are in mortal sin—then he goes to hell by his own choice. Most of us have had a lifetime to choose him.

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