Pope Francis declares death penalty inadmissible in all cases


#1

This should mercifully put an end to some tired arguments.


Teaching on the Death Penalty
#2

It should. But I don’t think it will.

Popcorn? :popcorn:


#3

Ahhh you noticed that I chose the word carefully. :wink:


#4

If the next Pope reverts to the JPII and Benedict XVI position (that it is acceptable in certain circumstances) will that put an end to your opposition?


#5

Why would that happen? Why not stick to the realm of reality?
Are you just looking for some loophole to justify opposing this teaching?


#6

Reality is that there will be another Pope and that he’s just as likely to adopt the position of every previous Pope in the history of the Church on the death penalty as the new and novel position of our current Pope. In that eventuality, will that settle the issue for you?


#7

I oppose capital punishment because JPII did, at least I oppose it for the U.S. because I think the U.S. actually is capable of preventing psychopaths or deadly criminals from killing in prison or from prison if the country would dedicate sufficient resources to it.

But anyone who has seen the kinds of “prisons” that exist in much of the third world could not possibly believe them sufficient to detain such persons indefinitely.

All the same, for me it’s no longer a relevant issue. It does trouble me, though, that the Pope would put the people in many countries in an impossible moral position of being obliged to protect the guilty rather than the innocent.


#8

Well for heavens sake, he is entitled to his opinion isn’t he. As long as he knows it is his opinion. My opinion remains, some people are so heinous they lose their right to breath.


#9

So you can pick and choose what Church teachings to accept?


#10

Of course you’re entitled to your own opinion.

As long as you understand that your opinion is contradicted by what the Church teaches, and has taught for millennia now.

In other words, your opinion is wrong.

But you’re right - you are entitled to it.


#11

The Church doesn’t teach that the “death penalty” is wrong in all cases. That’s the personal viewpoint of the current Pope, which was not shared by his predecessors and may not be shared by his successors.

The Church has never taught that the “death penalty” is wrong in all cases. And even if it arguably does now, based on Pope Francis’s declaration, there’s no way to make the case that it held that view in 1018 AD.


#12

So you reject portion of the ccc which expresses the faith of the church

Got it


#13

The Church has never taught that some people “are so heinous they lose their right to breath,” either.


#14

It does now.


#15

And if a future Pope reverts back to the position held by literally every other Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, i.e. that the death penalty is acceptable in some circumstances, will that settle the issue for you?


#16

So here’s my question. The most recent 2016 Republican Party platform supports the death penalty with these words: “The constitutionality of the death penalty is firmly settled by its explicit mention in the Fifth Amendment. With the murder rate soaring in our great cities, we condemn the Supreme court’s erosion of the right of the people to enact capital punishment in their states.”

Given this new definitive teaching from Pope Francis declaring the death penalty “Inadmissible,” I wonder how many Catholic Republicans will reconsider their party affiliation?


#17

No, the Catechism allows for the death penalty, not as punishment, but to prevent the person from committing more violence on others - but only when the government is unable to adequately secure the person:

2267 Assuming that the guilty party’s identity and responsibil­ity have been fully determined, the traditional teaching of the Church does not exclude recourse to the death penalty, if this is the only possible way of effectively defending human lives against the unjust aggressor.

Emphasis mine.


#18

That conditional statement is now amended to reflect the contemporary reality that it can no longer be regarded as the “only possible way”. If, in some cataclysmic future, the Magisterium would hold that it may be necessity again dictated the admissibility of capital punishment, then so be it. But now the is a clear statement. It is inadmissable.

This is no a pro-choice position, it is inescapably a pro-death penalty position.


#19

Well, if there is a World War III and we’re all bombed back into the Dark Ages with no possibility of lifetime incarceration–which was pretty much the special circumstances that previous Popes allowed–sure, a future Pope might do that.

Let’s hope that doesn’t happen.


#20

The issue I see is that the current (until today) version did not need to be modified to fit circumstances. This new version does.

I’m also concerned about how this relates to the Church’s teaching on self defense - will it be deemed that there is no reason to kill an attacker and therefore killing in self defense is now a sin?


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.