Pope Francis assures atheists: You don’t have to believe in God to go to heaven. This is not the first time he has made such statements, or perhaps this is a re-reporting of the same comments. I'm sorry to all you Catholics who think the Pope is perfect, this proves he is not. Read the question he is asked and the answer he gives.
In comments likely to enhance his progressive reputation, Pope Francis has written a long, open letter to the founder of La Repubblica newspaper, Eugenio Scalfari, stating that non-believers would be forgiven by God if they followed their consciences.
Responding to a list of questions published in the paper by Mr Scalfari, who is not a Roman Catholic, Francis wrote: “You ask me if the God of the Christians forgives those who don’t believe and who don’t seek the faith. I start by saying – and this is the fundamental thing – that God’s mercy has no limits if you go to him with a sincere and contrite heart. The issue for those who do not believe in God is to obey their conscience.
“Sin, even for those who have no faith, exists when people disobey their conscience.”
Robert Mickens, the Vatican correspondent for the Catholic journal The Tablet, said the pontiff’s comments were further evidence of his attempts to shake off the Catholic Church’s fusty image, reinforced by his extremely conservative predecessor Benedict XVI. “Francis is a still a conservative,” said Mr Mickens. “But what this is all about is him seeking to have a more meaningful dialogue with the world.”
The Pope is simply incorrect in his thinking.
God will forgive your sin if you confess that sin and turn from that sin and accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. The unforgivable sin is not having faith, not accepting Christ's gift of eternal life achieved by His sacrifice for us.
Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. --John 14:6 NIV Holy Bible
I will give the Pope the benefit of the doubt in that perhaps his wording, the translation of what he was trying to convey, was in error.