Pope Francis, in Evangelii Gaudium, speaks of the “justification” of non-Christians. Do you buy it?
254. Non-Christians, by God’s gracious initiative, when they are faithful to their own consciences, can live “justified by the grace of God”,[International Theological Commission, Christianity and the World Religions (1996), 72: Enchiridion Vaticanum 15, No. 1061] and thus be “associated to the paschal mystery of Jesus Christ”.[Ibid.] But due to the sacramental dimension of sanctifying grace, God’s working in them tends to produce signs and rites, sacred expressions which in turn bring others to a communitarian experience of journeying towards God.[Cf. ibid., 81-87] While these lack the meaning and efficacy of the sacraments instituted by Christ, they can be channels which the Holy Spirit raises up in order to liberate non-Christians from atheistic immanentism or from purely individual religious experiences. The same Spirit everywhere brings forth various forms of practical wisdom which help people to bear suffering and to live in greater peace and harmony. As Christians, we can also benefit from these treasures built up over many centuries, which can help us better to live our own beliefs.
This kind of thinking, even if it does come from a Catholic theological commission, might be troubling to some believers. Does the Holy Spirit work in non-believers? Do Christians have something to learn from the “practical wisdom” mentioned? I suppose we have to accept that Thomas Aquinas utilized a pagan philosopher, and the result–scholasticism, was a primary theological movement of the second millennium.