your witness

By Diogenes ( articles ) | Mar 07, 2008

Today is the memorial of Saints Felicity and Perpetua, martyred in Carthage on March 7, A.D. 203, in the reign of the emperor Septimius Severus. This detail in the Catholic Encyclopedia article is interesting:

Felicitas, who at the time of her incarceration was with child (in the eighth month), was apprehensive that she would not be permitted to suffer martyrdom at the same time as the others, since the law forbade the execution of pregnant women.

If it's true that the law of pagan Rome forbade the execution of pregnant women, it points to a recognition, however incomplete, that her child had a value distinct from that of its mother and was worthy of protection. Would NARAL and NOW, I wonder, be prepared to take a position contrary to that of Roman law -- viz., that pregnancy should not delay an execution in states with capital punishment -- on the grounds that there exists no moral entity distinct from the condemned woman to be taken into consideration?

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  • Posted by: - Oct. 22, 2009 7:38 PM ET USA

    "those Anglicans who came pleading for incorporation were fugitives from the chaos he abetted" Were they? The Traditional Anglican Communion made their break with liberal Anglican Communion bodies in the 1970s, long before Williams became Primate (2003). Or does some body of *current* Anglican Communion members want to take up the Pope's offer?

  • Posted by: adamah - Oct. 22, 2009 2:24 PM ET USA

    Actually, I would call standard ecumenism vegetarian lasagne ecumenism without the cheese.