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

PENALTIES

A deprivation of some spiritual or temporal good by a proper authority as a corrective punishment for a criminal or delinquent act. The gravity of a penalty does not depend only on the malic of an act but also on the circumstances and consequences of what was done. Canon law states that the Church founded by Christ has the right and duty to inflict penalties for the correction of delinquent actions but recommends resorting to penal measures only when absolutely necessary, and to use them in moderation. Everyone subject to Church laws may be subject to Church penalties, and the same authority that can exempt a person from such a law may also exempt from the penalty attached to its violation.

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

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

Recent Catholic Commentary

Mysteries, again and again! 21 hours ago
Tips for getting comfortable with evangelization 23 hours ago
The Shroud of Turin on Display (and an odd canonical case against it) April 16
The Vatican says the LCWR is acting Catholic. And that's news. April 16
The Truth about the Armenian Genocide April 15

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope challenges world leaders' silence on persecution of Christians CWN - April 6
Pope outlines plans for the extraordinary jubilee of mercy CWN - April 13
Vatican completes doctrinal assessment of Leadership Conference of Women Religious CWN - April 16