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POPE FRANCIS: DEATH PENALTY IS CONTRARY TO THE GOSPEL

October 11, 2017:

In a speech to members of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization, Pope Francis said the topic of the death penalty should have “a more adequate and coherent space” in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
This topic “cannot be reduced to a mere memory of a historic teaching” without taking into account the works and teachings of recent popes, he said, adding that it must also consider the “mutual awareness of the Christian people, who refuse a consensual attitude toward a penalty which seriously undermines human dignity.”
“It must be strongly confirmed that condemning a person to the death penalty is an inhumane measure that humiliates, in any way it is pursued, human dignity.”
The death penalty, he said, “is in itself contrary to the Gospel because it is voluntarily decided to suppress a human life, which is always sacred in the eyes of the Creator and of which God only in the final analysis is the true judge and guarantor.”
Pope Francis spoke to participants in a special day-long conference marking the 25th anniversary of the publication of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, promulgated by Saint John Paul II in 1992.
The Catechism currently explains that the death penalty is morally impermissible “if bloodless means are sufficient to defend human lives against an aggressor and to protect public order and the safety of persons.”
During their pontificates, Pope St. John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI repeatedly called for the abolition of the death penalty. Both popes encouraged nations to work towards just means of punishment and public order without recourse to the death penalty.
In his speech, Pope Francis said that in past centuries, where defense measures were poor and the maturity of society “still had not met a positive development,” the death penalty seemed like a “logical consequence of the application of justice they had to follow.”
He noted that “unfortunately” even the papal state at times adopted this “extreme and inhumane means” of punishment, “neglecting the primacy of mercy and justice.”
Francis stressed that God is a Father “who always waits for the return of the son who, knowing he has erred, asks forgiveness and begins a new life.”
“No one, therefore, can have their life taken from them, nor the possibility of a moral and existential redemption that goes back in favor of the community.”
“Let us take responsibility for the past, and let us recognize that these means were dictated by a more legalistic mentality than Christian,” he said.
Concern for maintaining power “led to an overestimation of the value of the law, impeding it from a deeper understanding of the Gospel,” he said. “However, to stay neutral today in the face of the new demands for the reaffirmation of personal dignity, would make us more guilty.” 
Pope Francis said that “harmonious development of doctrine” requires that new treatments on the death penalty “leave out positions in defense of arguments which now appear decisively contrary to the new understanding of Christian truth...It is necessary to reiterate that, no matter how serious the crime committed, the death penalty is inadmissible because it is an attempt against the inviolability and dignity of the person.”

(Sources: CNA/EWTN News, 11/10/2017)

PAKISTAN: MULTAN WOMAN HANDED DEATH SENTENCE FOR HUSBAND'S MURDER
THAILAND MOVES TOWARDS ABOLISHING DEATH PENALTY
MONGOLIA: PRESIDENT SET TO BRING DEATH PENALTY BACK FOR CHILD ABUSE CRIMES
PAKISTAN: AL QAEDA MAN’S DEATH PENALTY COMMUTED
JORDAN: MAN WHO RAPED AND KILLED A 7-YEAR-OLD SYRIAN BOY SENTENCED TO DEATH
IRAN: PRISONER EXECUTED AT RASHT CENTRAL PRISON
SAUDI ARABIA: TWO INDONESIANS GRANTED PARDON
INDIA: HIGH COURT REDUCES ’CYANIDE’ MOHAN’S DEATH PENALTY TO LIFE IMPRISONMENT
IRAN: PRISONER EXECUTED ON MOHAREBEH CHARGES AT KERMAN PRISON
JORDAN: BENGALI HOUSEMAID SENTENCED TO DEATH AFTER MURDERING JORDANIAN COUPLE WITH AN AXE
TEXAS (USA): ROBERT PRUETT EXECUTED
ARKANSAS (USA): RICKEY DALE NEWMAN FREED AFTER 16 YEARS IN CUSTODY
'THE DEATH PENALTY HAS NO PLACE IN THE 21ST CENTURY' – UN CHIEF GUTERRES
KENYA: KAMITI PRISONERS WANT SUPREME COURT TO REMOVE DEATH PENALTY
KENYA: STUDENT SENTENCED TO HANG FOR ALLEGEDLY STEALING SH500
HANDS OFF CAIN DEDICATES THE WORLD DAY AGAINST THE DEATH PENALTY TO IRAN
EGYPT: SAUDI SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR KILLING LIBYAN WIFE
INDIA: GUJARAT HC COMMUTES DEATH PENALTY FOR 11 CONVICTS TO LIFE IMPRISONMENT
CALIFORNIA (USA): REGULATORS REJECT NEW LETHAL INJECTION METHOD
COURT SENTENCES 13 OF ‘SOLDIERS OF EGYPT’ TO DEATH’
IRAN: MAN EXECUTED FOR DRUG OFFENCES
SIERRA LEONE: 6 SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR CONSPIRACY AND ROBBERY
FLORIDA: MICHAEL LAMBRIX EXECUTED
PAKISTAN: THREE HARDCORE TERRORISTS HANGED IN KHYBER PAKHTUNKHWA PRISON
TURKEY SENTENCES 42 TO LIFE OVER PLOT TO KILL ERDOGAN
BANGLADESH: WOMAN GETS DEATH PENALTY FOR KILLING STEPDAUGHTER
NIGERIA: EIGHT DEATH-ROW INMATES COMMUTED TO LIFE IMPRISONMENT IN ANAMBRA
JORDANIAN COURT SENTENCE MAN TO DEATH
SAUDI ARABIA: PAKISTANI ‘DRUG TRAFFICKER’ AMONG SIX BEHEADED

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IRAN. HANDS OFF CAIN, REDUCTION OF DRUG EXECUTIONS BUT NUMBERS REMAIN WORRISOME
  HUMAN RIGHTS: DEMONSTRATION OF THE RADICAL PARTY BEFORE IRANIAN EMBASSY 14 FEBRUARY  
  BELARUS EXECUTES TWO CONVICTED MURDERERS  
  MALAYSIA: GOVT HALTS EXECUTION OF 1,200 DEATH ROW INMATES  
  JAPAN HANGS CULT LEADER SHOKO ASAHARA, 6 OTHERS FOR 1995 TOKYO SUBWAY SARIN ATTACK  
  SOMALIA - DEATH PENALTY AND TERRORISM  
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