Pope Wants to Change Catholic Church’s Position on the Death Penalty
Pope Francis Speaks About Ending Support for the Death Penalty In Recent Speech
Pope Francis seems to be indicating his willingness to change Catholic doctrine in a speech celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. He argued that the catechism, which explains the central statement of faith and belief for the Catholic Church, should be changed to make the death penalty inadmissible.
Pope Wants to Change Catholic Church’s Position on the Death Penalty[/tweetthis]
Pope Francis declared the death penalty was “an inhuman measure that humiliates human dignity, in whatever form it is carried out”, and it “is, of itself, contrary to the Gospel … God alone is the true judge and guarantor.” He believes that the death penalty is “contrary to the Gospel.”
The Catholic Church has previously supported the death penalty and even had it as a punishment until 1969. There has been some criticism about the church’s support of the death penalty, but attack abortion on the grounds of saving lives. Nearly half of all American Catholics support the death penalty.
Pope Francis emphasized that the traditions of the church were a “living reality” that should change with contemporary society. This is part of his campaign to possibly end support for other violent actions, including Just War Theory, the belief that war can be justifiable under certain circumstances. The living reality is based upon “Sensus Fidei” or sense of faith. This means that the church can develop how the teaching of religious doctrine develops.
Pope Francis continues modernizing the Catholic Church and emphasizing the church as a foundational morality for human rights.