Date: March 30 2018
Source: The Guardian; New York Times
The founder of Italian newspaper La Repubblica, Eugenio Scalfari, 93, wrote in an article that the Pope said during their conversation that hell does not exist. Unrepentant souls just disappear. The Vatican quickly clarified that the article was “the fruit of his reconstruction” and not “a faithful transcription of the Holy Father’s words”.
In the article, Scalfari wrote asked the Pope where “bad souls” go. The Pope, he said, replied: “They are not punished. Those who repent obtain God’s forgiveness and take their place among the ranks of those who contemplate him, but those who do not repent and cannot be forgiven disappear. A hell doesn’t exist, the disappearance of sinning souls exists.”
Such a view contradicts the standard doctrine of the Catholic Church that hell exists.
Sources: The Guardian, March 30, 2018; https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/mar/30/vatican-scrambles-to-clarify-popes-denial-that-hell-exists
New York Times, March 30, 2018; https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/30/world/europe/pope-francis-hell-scalfari.html