Four conditions must be met for a teaching of the Catholic Church to be considered infallible. Acceptance of the death penalty meets none of them. St. John Paul II laid down theoretical markers that provide a clear basis for a Catholic teaching rejecting the death penalty in principle. Part two of a two-part essay.
Edward Feser and Joseph M. Bessette’s new book asserts that Catholics cannot legitimately reject the death penalty as wrong always and everywhere. They are wrong. Part one of a two-part essay.
Knowing that the episcopate is divided on de fide doctrines of morality, Pope Francis needs to lead his brother bishops to face frankly this crisis in the Church and to resolve firmly to overcome it. Meanwhile, lay Catholics should not allow distress over the present situation to shake their faith in Jesus’s promise to preserve the Church from damnable error.
Some theologians claim that the Council of Trent lends support to the idea that the Catholic Church could accept divorce and remarriage. Careful scholarship reveals that this is not true.
True doctors and abortionists are different kinds of persons because they perform different acts as they carry out different proposals: the one, a proposal to remove a non-viable child to save the mother; the other, to kill that child for the mother’s benefit.
A faulty understanding of conscience as an instrument of subjective preferences and feelings is fueling efforts to undermine conscience protection for doctors who oppose abortion and provision of contraceptives.
The science of fetal pain remains uncertain, but we still have a duty to avoid the possibility of inflicting undue suffering.