The Vatican announced on Thursday that the Catholic Church will now adjust teachings, deeming the death penalty ‘inadmissible’. Pope Francis stated that the Church will work towards the abolishment of worldwide capital punishment. The church stated that the death penalty is “inadmissible because it is an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person”.
John Carr, the director of the Initiative on Catholic Social Thought and Public Life at Georgetown University, weighed in on the new Catholic curriculum:
“I think what this does is get people to reexamine their own attitudes and convictions. The death penalty in the United States probably will not come to an end through an act of Congress or a Supreme Court decision. It will essentially fade away as prosecutors don’t ask for it, juries don’t recommend it, and the rest of us don’t support it.”
Since Pope Francis began his tenure of the Bishop of Rome, he has advocated for the end of the death penalty. Previously, Pope Francis called capital punishment an “inhumane measure”.
“Today, however, there is an increasing awareness that the dignity of the person is not lost even after the commission of very serious crimes,” it says, adding: “more effective systems of detention have been developed, which ensure the due protection of citizens but, at the same time, do not definitively deprive the guilty of the possibility of redemption.”
“In addition, a new understanding has emerged of the significance of penal sanctions imposed by the state,” it added.
“Lastly, more effective systems of detention have been developed, which ensure the due protection of citizens but, at the same time, do not definitively deprive the guilty of the possibility of redemption,” it said.