"Wherefore faith itself, even when it does not work by charity [Gal 5:6], is in itself a gift of God, and the act of faith is a work pertaining to salvation, by which man yields voluntary obedience to God Himself, by assenting to and cooperating with His grace, which he is able to resist (can. v)."
(Dogmatic Constitution on the Catholic Faith, ch. III, "Of Faith")
I found this on Dave Armstrong's blog, and I thought it was interesting to finally hear the magesterium talk about faith without works. To me Catholicism has a vast deal of writing about faith with works/working in love, and about Baptism, Penance, and the necessity of the sacraments. If I could have my 'dream encyclical' it would be on the issue of faith without works, repentence without the desire for confession, mortal sin, and imperfect contrition. Those are the grey areas I'm constantly asked about by new or returning Catholics.
Psychologically, I think it's impossible to be sane and hold the view that 6 days out of 7 you're going to Hell, so I've just decided that I have "special revelation" (Isn't scripture special revelation anyway?) that the fact that I have faith in Christ and that I will go to confession eventually is enough for God (possibly even more than enough). For if Catholics are so desperate about the idea that he "wills that all might be saved" and that 'all that is necessary is an act of the will' for salvation, then my will for salvation apart from any present sacrament, should be sufficient source for hope in salvation. (that is until someone quotes a mean-spirited council from the middle ages that says the exact opposite).