Shouldn't There Be A Punishment For Going Against Church Teaching?

A poll shows that about 54% of American Catholics favor same-sex marriage. About 55% favor abortion in most or all circumstances. About 59% favor the “ordination” of women.

I once had an English teacher that told me that he is Catholic, but he believes that if a woman is raped, she should be allowed to get an abortion. :eek:

Shouldn’t there be a punishment? I think excommunication would be an appropriate punishment for heresy, don’t you think? :shrug:

These quotes came to mind:

“Let him without sin cast the first stone” and “Love thy neighbor”

So no, I don’t think that we should excommunicate someone for poor catechesis. Rather, correct and teach.

God wants all His children saved. If we give them “the boot” how are they going to get to heaven?

I just discovered that there is a punishment. Automatic excommunication is incurred for heresy.

Plus, how do you know they are poorly catechized? Perhaps they are properly catechized, but still believe heresy? I have a Catholic friend who knows full-well the consequences, but he still persists in his beliefs.

Why stop there? Just put them to death, like the good old days! I bet we haven’t had a good old stake burning in centuries. :smiley:

The corporal works of mercy say admonish the sinner, not kill them!

I am not trying to emphasize punishment. I am emphasizing repentance. The purpose of excommunication is to bring someone to repentance.

Very true. Although I’m all for not shying away from punishments, excommunication is a pastoral tool used to bring people into line; if it’s simply being used for the sake of punishment and nothing past that there’s a certain failure by the invoking pastor. I will give the caveat, however, that we shouldn’t jump to the other extreme and forsake punishment spurred on by, perhaps, hasty/imprecise comments made by Francis.

Anyway, I’m not sure as to what a fitting punishment should be :shrug:. If the individual can’t recognize their disobedience is a sin in the first place piling on punishments doesn’t seem like a practical manner of bringing someone into line. Proper catechesis is my answer once again.

The Catholic Church used to punish people spiritually and physically many centuries ago. It doesn’t work and is inhumane. God gives all of us free choice to worship and follow him. God will judge all of us one day, so don’t worry about others. We should only be concerned with our own and childrens walk with Jesus.

If this scenario is applied totally and across the board, certain things will happen, especially in the Western part of the Church:

  1. Churches will be virtually empty on Sunday, as all those “automatically excommunicated” will not be there, and many others in their families not excommunicated will not be there, perhaps out of sympathy for them or in protest.

  2. The parish and Church coffers will empty quite quickly, as all those you would excommunicate would also stop contributing money, of course.

  3. Catholic schools would empty, not only of Catholic students (the non-Catholics would still be there, ironically!) but also of teachers and staff.

  4. Some Masses would have to be cancelled, as a fair number of priests would be missing, not to mention cantors, choir, lectors, Eucharistic Ministers, etc.

  5. Most of the ministries and services that a parish provides would go dormant, as there would be few people (volunteers, don’t forget) to fill the various roles.

  6. The Church will be exposed as a place for the few and the righteous, rather than a source of comfort and hope for the many and the sinner. Totally opposite to what Jesus said His Church should be, and a refutation of the Gospel.

Obviously, the Church won’t and can’t do what you ask. If it did, it would no longer be the Catholic Church.

It’s a difficult one.

I read in a “Catholic” paper earlier this year (the Tablet) that the proportion of US Catholics that agreed with Gay Marriage was above the national average!

Pope Benedict in Salt of the Earth said:

“Perhaps the time has come to say farewell to the idea of traditionally Catholic cultures. Maybe we are facing a new and different kind of epoch in the Church’s history, where Christianity will again be characterised more by the mustard seed, where it will exist in small, insignificant groups that nonetheless live an intensive struggle against evil and bring the good into the world – that let God in.

I think going round telling people they are excommunicated, which will be interpreted by the masses as: you are going to hell, is not helpful. However, in my parish back home (run by a religous community) there is (or was) disagreement over whether or not to baptise children when you quite literally never see any of their family at mass.

Maybe a way forward is to stop baptising the children of lapsed Catholics who I suspect to make up the majority of the statistics you have quoted. If someone had come to John the Baptist and said: “well I’m not too fussed about everything you just said but here, baptise my kid anyway”, how would he have responded?

=bben15;11231482]A poll shows that about 54% of American Catholics favor same-sex marriage. About 55% favor abortion in most or all circumstances. About 59% favor the “ordination” of women.

I once had an English teacher that told me that he is Catholic, but he believes that if a woman is raped, she should be allowed to get an abortion. :eek:

Shouldn’t there be a punishment? I think excommunication would be an appropriate punishment for heresy, don’t you think? :shrug:

God IS “'here comes da Judge”

AND God WILL pass judgment: Fairly and Justly as he MUST!

Heb.6: 10 “For God is not so unjust as to overlook your work and the love which you showed for his sake in serving the saints, as you still do.”

Rev.2: 23 “and I will strike her children dead. And all the churches shall know that I am he who searches mind and heart, and I will give to each of you as your works deserve.”

1 Peter 1: 17 “Now if you invoke as Father him who judges impartially according to each one’s works, conduct yourselves with reverence during the time of your sojourning, “

Matt.19: 17 “And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? ***One there is who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.” ***

That said,
we should pray for them and for ALL those who hold the responsibilities of TEACHING our Catholic Faith. They have a HUGE responsibility and need our help; our prayers,

God Bless you!

Since it is cited in the Code, it would be interesting to know what the practical definition of “obstinate doubt” is, in terms of the penalty being actually applicable.

How do you know they’re not?

You know, statements and attitudes like this make me second guess my desire to convert. If you’re hoping to draw in members or retain the ones you have, this isn’t the way to go about it.

I think some people are misunderstanding what I am suggesting. I am suggesting that there should be some way to encourage them to repent. Excommunication should not just be seen as a punishment, but rather as a way to encourage them to repent.

I am not trying to drive people away from the Faith, rather, encourage them to follow it. That is why we must encourage our youth to follow the Church, so they do not grow up disagreeing with Church teaching.

If anyone misunderstood what I am suggesting, I apologize. Mea culpa.

I think the “intention” is very good but the point people are trying to make is that it would drive people away, whether that was intended or not, and become a PR nightmare. It could send out the message that we are “afraid” of people who speak their mind and “incapable” of entering into discussion (discussion doesn’t have to mean compromise). I think mass excommunications could be counterproductive and “a stumbling block” to many.

Then talk about how great Confession is and how you feel when you leave after confessing your sins. Talk about how God is merciful and that he will forgive them.

As an Australian, it is well understood over here that the American church is in crisis and has been since the sixties. Yet there is enormous faith in America which must be fostered. I don’t believe public shaming is the answer for a majority in error. Rather a consolidated prayer effort by the Universal Church might work. All we can do personally is to pray fervently for the soul of America.

Who cares?

Like, seriously??? It could be a PR nightmare???

Secularists already think Catholics are afraid of those who ‘speak their mind’ or don’t really take the faith seriously, as there are no ‘real’ consequences.

Here’s how I understand it: Those people who know the faith and DENY church teaching…they’re excommunicated. When they take communion… they’re excommunicated and it’s a mortal sim. When family members decide to ‘protest’ (because they see the church as a social club and not the means by which Our Lord enacts salvation) and skip holy days of obligation… it’s a mortal sin.

So tell me… how is it ‘more pastoral’ to allow souls to die instead of letting people know that IF they support XYZ they are out of line with church teaching, that if they take communion as such they incur excommunication, that if they skip sunday mass for an unjust reason they incur a mortal sin…

It doesn’t matter if these people are ‘told’ that they are excommunicated or not. If they know what the church teaches and defies it anyway, they are. If they skip church when they know they should be going, they are. They don’t need to be handed a note to be separated from the body of Christ.

I didn’t know that! Wow! Thanks for sharing! I’m learning a LOT from you all! Thanks!

I don’t get this whole there isn’t a consequence for our actions. Um HELLO. Hell. Hell is the consequence. We should be teaching our fellow brothers and sisters the proper teaching. If they know the proper teaching, pray for them. We should want all to make it to Heaven. Not throwing them out of the church.

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