Divorce, Going to Hell, and Being Angry at God

Fr. Josh answers questions about contested divorce, if mortal sin automatically leads to hell without confession, and if anger at God is a sin. If you have a question, comment, or response for Fr. Josh, email us at askfrjosh@ascensionpress.com. You may hear your question or comment in an upcoming podcast episode!


Snippet from the Show:

If we don’t have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, the rules of the Church will not make sense. (Because I didn’t know Jesus I didn’t care about the rules.) Rules without relationship will always lead to rebellion. Rules that flow from a relationship will make sense and lead to us becoming saints.




Glory Story (2:45)

Fr. Josh tells the story of how he lost within a week a first class relic of St. Teresa that an order of Carmelite nuns have had for over 100 years. Was he able to find it?


Listener Feedback (10:15)


Divorce (16:30)

My wife and I have been married for 27 years. Both raised Catholic. We have 4 children. Oldest is 25, youngest is 7. She has been telling me for 3 years that I need to let her go and give her a divorce. After our last child, I didn’t want to have any more children (I was 43 at the time). Relationship started souring after that. Says she fell out of love with me. I have made many changes of my own free will to improve our relationship. It wasn’t good enough. She filed for divorce and it will be over in about 30 days. I didn’t want this to happen. What are my obligations to her, if many years from now, I meet someone that wants to love me and I her?

-A Desperate Husband


Going to Hell (24:58)

Even as a practicing Catholic, I struggle with some serious vices that have led me to fall into mortal sin. These moments of fall, though through the grace of God are getting less and less, are punctuated by a panicked rush to find the sacrament of Reconciliation. I’m scared that even if I’m truly sorry, if I die before absolution, I will still go to hell. Does that fear come from the opposer? How can we tell the difference between guilt that helps us grow and guilt meant to shame and scare us away from God’s reach?



Being Angry at God (30:02)

Is it a sin to be angry with God? Backstory, my husband is active duty military, and we are used to moving around frequently but my parents are aging and my children are getting to a sensitive age in school where they need extended family and stability. Opportunities in my husband’s career have presented themselves that would put us close to family, and also stabilize our children during high school. I have been praying Novenas nonstop, Rosaries, and thanksgiving prayers. Each time we get close to having our prayers answered, the opportunity is taken away and we are left empty-handed and disappointed. My faith is shaken and I just don’t understand. I pray that Jesus will show me his way, pray He will help me have faith in His plan, but I’ve become just angry and depressed. I’ve even briefly stopped going to mass because I would sit there and be so angry that my prayers have gone unanswered. I know I have sinned by missing mass, but what about being angry with God? Do I need to confess this too? Please keep my family in your prayers that we may see Jesus’s way through the pain of disappointment.

-Military Wife


Universal Points (37:54)

  1. Divorce – God is calling us to love with the love of Christ.
  2. Going to Hell – Everyone struggles with sin whether venial or mortal, but you can find freedom in this life or purgatory if you refocus on the mercy of God more than your brokenness.
  3. Being Angry at God – God’s plans are far greater than ours.



Meet Your Host, Fr. Josh Johnson:

While Fr. Josh was raised Catholic, he didn’t like the Church growing up. One day, in adoration, he fell in love with Jesus and received the call to become a priest. Now, Fr. Josh is the pastor for Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Louisiana, and he is a presenter in two of Ascension’s programs: Altaration, and YOU: Life, Love, and the Theology of the Body.









  1. My biggest hurdle with conversion is the subject of divorce. My ex husband was so terrifically abusive that I almost killed myself. He would not go to therapy with our pastor or with a Christian therapist. So I took our son and left. He would regularly scream at our three year old and throw things. I filed for divorce and we are finally safe. But now my faith that had brought me through this crisis keeps prattling on that because we divorced I’m going to hell. I was so terrified and grieved over my husband’s abuse I almost killed myself. But my son cried out for me and I went to him instead. That’s when I knew it was more dangerous to stay than leave. How can a God that prevented me from dying by having my son cry for me condemn me for leaving an abusing situation? I can not reconcile myself that any religion or ‘Christians’ believe that I should have endured longer with his abuse. Where is my Just and Loving God?

  2. Praying for the Dad with the 4 kids in the midst of divorce.
    Advice: Lean on God and surround yourself with people of faith. The answer to this situation you are going thru can only be found in our faith. Be strong in prayers. Remember if you don’t fill your head with prayer Satan, the deciver, will fill it with fear, anger, anxieties, worry, resentment, temptation and unwelcome memories. Praying for all???


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