First Things: MAGISTERIAL IRRESPONSIBILITY: UNDERSTANDING THE MODIFIED TEACHING ON CAPITAL PUNISHMENT

Petra Corruption in the Vatican Leave a Comment

MAGISTERIAL IRRESPONSIBILITY UNDERSTANDING THE MODIFIED TEACHING ON CAPITAL PUNISHMENT by Steven A. Long October 2018 Luis Francisco Cardinal ­Ladaria Ferrer of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) has announced to the bishops Pope Francis’s approval of new material addressing capital punishment in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (number 2267). The inserted passage notes “an increasing awareness that the dignity of the person is not lost even after the commission of very serious crimes,” “a new understanding . . . of the significance of penal sanctions,” and “more effective systems of detention.” It concludes, “Consequently, the Church teaches, in the light of the Gospel, that ‘the death penalty is inadmissible because it is an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person’, and she works with determination for its abolition worldwide.” This addition to the Catechism is widely either heralded or attacked as a major doctrinal …