Critical need by 8/31:   $10,000 to fund a serious immediate need.   $8,236 to go.   Please help now!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

Search:

Or browse the dictionary by selecting a letter!
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

FORCE

In moral theology that which proceeds from some agent outside the victim whose will is opposed to it. It is the same thing as violence and implies an external agent and resistance on the part of the victim. Consequently no one can, properly speaking, apply force or inflict violence on himself or herself. As a basic rule, force can affect external acts only, not the internal acts of the will. It follows, then, that internal acts are morally imputable no matter how much violence a person has to endure; external acts performed under compulsion are not imputed, provided the individual has withheld internal consent.

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Just as you suspected, most polls are useless. 22 hours ago
Intrinsic evil can't be evaluated on a case-by-case basis 22 hours ago
'Catholicism by osmosis is dead'—Weigel hits the nail on the head 23 hours ago
Human Life is Family Life August 25
The confusion, complexities and dangers of marriage annulments: A call to order August 25

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: welcome with compassion those who have remarried outside the Church CWN - August 5