EWTN Catholic Q&A
re: Are Lutherans saved?
Question from confused on 05-18-2012:

Since "salvation comes from Christ the Head through the Church, His Body, which is the Catholic Church. This means that no one can be saved who knows the Catholic Church was founded by Christ for their salvation, yet refuses to enter it or remain in it (Catechism of the Catholic Church 846)", why would a God fearing person who believes the Catholic Church is the original true Church but still not enter the Church? My mother is not Catholic (father is)and she is a Godly woman and she acknowledges that the Catholic Church is the original true Church founded by Christ but when I ask her why she doesn't enter it, she just says that she is not Catholic. Can folks believe the Catholic Church is the true Church and still have some sort of ignorance that prevents them from entering?

Answer by David Gregson on 01-22-2014:

It sounds like your mother supposes that one is Catholic or non-Catholic by nature. If that were the case, no one would ever have become Catholic, and there would be no Catholic Church. But instead, there are now, after 2000 years, 1.2 billion Catholics.

Or else your mother would rather stay with what is familiar to her than leave it for something better. It may be that she recognizes, on a theoretical level, that the Catholic Church is the true Church, but that she doesn't feel it in her heart. All you can do is pray for her, that her heart be opened to the Catholic Faith, and show her by your example the joy of being Catholic.