Excommunication? Let the punishment fit the crime
My favorite canon-law blogger, Edward Peters, is unhappy with the Rockford Pro-Life Initiative for demanding the excommunication of Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, an advocate of same-sex marriage.
Peters does not agree with Quinn—not by a long shot. On the contrary, he believes that Quinn should be subject to canonical discipline. But he reminds us that excommunication is a particular disciplinary remedy, applicable only in certain carefully defined cases. “Support for so-call ‘gay-marriage’ is not an excommunicable offense,” Peters says, “and it cannot be made one except in accord with Canons 1314-1318, none of which has been put on the table.”
”Meanwhile Canon 1369 gets ignored again, and for that matter Canon 915 is overlooked as a possible response,” Peters continues. There are appropriate penalties. By calling for excommunication, which is not an appropriate penalty in this case, conservative Catholics confuse matters, at a time when clarity would be more likely to prompt effective action.
An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:
Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach five million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!
Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our final 2013 goal ($26,969 to go, assuming receipt of matching funds):
All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!