Kiko Arguello’s theology is a morass of half-truths, and here is another example. In this case it involves the “last things”, and specifically, purgatory.
Let’s check out what Kiko Arguello says in this catechesis taken from the first volume of the Neocatechumenal Way’s Catechetical Directory:
“For the person who believes in Jesus Christ, death is like falling asleep. You go to bed and you fall asleep without knowing when. That is how you will die, like falling asleep. That is why the Church calls the dead “those who have fallen asleep in the Lord.” You die as if you are falling asleep and you awake in the resurrection. In an instant you pass from this world to glory, whether or not millions of years have gone by. This is why we Christians do not weep for our dead as the pagans do, for our brothers and sisters who die are alive.” (p. 277)
Does this description of the last things make any allowance for a final purification (purgatory) for the Christian at all? No. According to Kiko, Christians die and in an instant, they pass from this world to glory (heaven). This, in fact, is what many people around us believe, including most devout Protestants. The Church, however, proclaims something different, that while some people have no need to be purified after death and do go straight to heaven, many do require the grace of purgatory. There is just no way to squeeze the concept of purgatory into Kiko’s description of the last things.
The Catechism tells us, “All who die in God’s grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven. The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification of the elect, which is entirely different from the punishment of the damned. “ [CCC 1030-1031]
This final purification is God applying His salvation to us. It is a grace, and it is very good news. It means that our holiness will be REAL, not fake, and not imputed, when we arrive at the gates of heaven. In fact, that’s not just good news, that’s great news! Any description of the last things presented in a kerygma should not explicitly or implicitly exclude the possibility of purgatory, but Kiko’s kerygma clearly does.
Why does Kiko exclude the possibility of purgatory? Ask your Neocatechumenal catechist.