John Ritter's Religion

I have a friend who wants to know what John Ritter’s religion was because she wants to know if he is in heaven.

Anyone have any cites I can show her

Mod’s if you feel this is better for another forum, please shoot it over there.

Wow. Now I’m starting to remember why I gave up christianity.

Look, he lived a good life, so IF heaven even exists, John is there.

God’s not a prick.

Soapbox Monkey, I agree with you, but she needs to see something that shows he was a Chrisitan.

God’s not a prick.

But he is snipy.
[sub]Sorry, I just thought that was a good line from that Joan of Arcadia show![/sub]

Not all Christians believe in stuff like that you know… If you were a good person, you go to heaven.

Beat me to it

Er, it’s a GQ; we’ll stipulate everyone’s vastly superior tolerance and sophistication; but if anyone cares about or knows Jno. Ritter’s religious persuasion (and I don’t, on either count, though I bear the man no malice), that would be responsive to the question . . . .

didn’t John Ritter play a Minister of religion on the Waltons? I think it was his first regular TV show.

mind you anyone who inflicted the Waltons on us is not likely to be in Heaven (only joking John)

Scoo8b I know not all Christians believe that but my friend does. I told her he is in heaven (if you believer in it) but she won’t believe it until she sees something showing he was a Chrisitan.

But it’s a silly and meaningless question even from a religious standpoint: Baptists don’t think all Baptists go to heaven; Catholics don’t think all Catholics get in; etc. It would have to be shown that not only was he a member of a certain denomination, but that he was “sin-free” and confessed before dying.

Eve, my friend beleives that as long as he is a Christian he will be in heaven. My own belief is that the God of each religion is the same one just under different names and if you try to live a good life you will end up in heaven.

Your friend is pretty misinformed about her own religion then. I’m an atheist, and even I know that being a member of a certain religion isn’t a “get into heaven free” card.

I looked through a bunch of websites on John Ritter and I can’t find a single mention of his religious beliefs. In any case, even if we could find out where and if he worshipped, that wouldn’t say anything certain about his beliefs. (And even if we knew his beliefs, as has been pointed out, that wouldn’t say anything about the state of his soul.) Tell your friend you have no idea what religion he was. And tell her that neither you nor her nor anyone else knows whether he’s in heaven. And that it’s none of her business anyway.

It really depends on your definition of “Christian.” Maybe her idea of what a Christian is what we think of as a good Christian - all the bad ones don’t count.

Most middle of the road protestant religions believe that admission to heaven is about salvation. To qualify for salvation, you must have accepted that Jesus Christ is the true son of God and that his sacrifice paid the price of your admission into heaven. See the Apostles Creed for a quick summary of most Protestant belief.

Once that acceptance is made, then your admission into heaven is indeed guaranteed. You are in a state of “grace”.
(Yes, I’m simplifying, how’d you guess?)

This acceptance is the definition of being “Christian” so knowing if he was a Christian is sufficient to know that he is or isn’t heaven-bound.

This being said, I have no idea of John Ritter’s beliefs.

You’re gonna burn for that one, sweetie!

Belrix writes:

> This acceptance is the definition of being “Christian” so
> knowing if he was a Christian is sufficient to know that he is or
> isn’t heaven-bound.

If that’s the definition of being a Christian then it’s impossible (for any other human) to say whether anyone was a Christian at the time of their death. Even if you knew whether someone had regularly attended church all their life and whether, as far as close friends and relatives, knew, this person had been a “good person” in their dealings with others and appeared to pray regularly and ask for forgiveness for their sins, no other person could know what the deceased had really believed. Maybe he had been doing terrible things that his relatives and friends hadn’t found out about. Maybe he didn’t believe anything he professed and was simply mocking them all with fake prayers.

You’re now going to say, “But God would know the truth.” The point is that neither MannyL nor his friend is God, and thus there’s no way they could possibly know whether John Ritter is going to heaven, even if you accept the belief structure of MannyL’s friend. Even if MannyL could bring all John Ritter’s friends and relatives together and they could tell his friend about John’s regular attendance at church and his professed beliefs and his public prayers, the friends and relatives wouldn’t know anything about what John’s real beliefs and his real prayers were like. Even if you accept the belief structure of most Christians, only God could know if a person was really going to heaven.

Furthermore, I think that most Christians would find offensive the notion that Christians should spend their time trying to figure out whether a random dead celebrity has gone to heaven. Even those Christians who believe that they should witness to others about Christ shouldn’t have any concern about John Ritter, since he’s dead and hence can’t be witnessed to. (Some Christians would say that you can pray for the soul of a dead person. Even in that case, that doesn’t make John Ritter’s soul any more of MannyL’s friend’s business than the other 100 billion people who have lived and died in the history of humanity.) Most Christians would say that it’s none of your business whether any random dead person who you never met is in heaven and that you should worry about your own soul and not waste your time worrying about others’ fates.

“Not all Christians believe in stuff like that you know… If you were a good person, you go to heaven.”

How then can you call yourself a Christian? Christ said that nobody comes to God except through him, and obviously nobody gets into heaven without being with God. This can logically be shortened to IF AND ONLY IF Christ THEN Heaven. Good works cannot get you into heaven, unless you decide that Jesus was lying. In that case, you are obviously not Christian!

Now, I think it would be pretty cruel to damn someone because they didn’t get the memo, but this is the info we have to run on. Maybe people will have a chance to choose after they are dead; a sort of discussion outside the pearly gates? Probably what you should do is have some faith. God will take care of people who have not heard of him; even if you cannot conceive of how the problem would be solved.

And in the end, I have not addressed the OP at all.

MannyL , might have been a good idea not to mention the whole Heaven thing in the OP. This has turned into a whole messy theological debate rather than a simple inquiry into the extent of man’s religious observance.

I don’t have any info on whether he was a church goer but his father, Tex Ritter, did run for Governor of Tennesse as well as U.S. Senate from Tennessee. Now this don’t make him Christian, certainly any non-Christian would have the right to run for these offices, but in Tex’s generation (or today for that matter) it’s hard to imagine any non-Christian standing a snowball’s chance in hell of getting elected to a major office in the State of Tennessee (I might add that it would also be an uphill battle for a Catholic). So my guess is that he was a Protestant of some sort. Then again, he wasn’t elected.

Now we still haven’t established that Tex was a Christian, and even if he was that doesn’t mean that John was a Christian. But this is as much conjecture as I can muster. I tried searching for info on his funeral but could only find “private service”.


What would your friend say if she found out that John Ritter was, in fact, Jewish? Would that mean he wasn’t in heaven?