• The authority of the Papacy is cheapened when popes issue position papers which reflect personal preferences not found in Sacred Scripture, Sacred Tradition, or the Magisterium. It is also cheapened when popes make ill-considered off the cuff remarks. Francis provides a two-fer, as ever.

  • Deacon John M. Bresnahan

    Again another story that totally ignores the issue of what to do with those who murder in prison–especially the 8-10 prison guards murdered each year. How about some debate on this issue???
    If there is no capital punishment (which I am against) what should take its place????. The argument is usually that life in prison should replace it. But what do you do if life in prison is also not an option.??? Do we let ,mass murderers onto the streets to attack our sons and daughters????.

  • John

    The Pope should keep his nose out of US civic policies. HE has his own little nation state to deal with. No one died (including Jesus) and made him boss of the world.

  • What irony that this Pope finds eternal punishment to be inhuman and obscene!
    He is at odds with the god he claims exists.

    I agree with the Pope on this one.

    I am against Capital punishment on moral grounds and I believe life imprisonment is necessary for people who have no respect for the lives of others – but imprisonment should be humane and should allow for the criminal to experience decency and reflection.

    The killer who is imprisoned should have a taste of the value of life – if for no other reason than to perhaps understand and share with potential evil doers – what a beautiful thing he has robbed of others.

  • What gets you is that his acolytes for a while tried defending his statements by offering that you had to use an ‘Argentine frame of reference’. Waal, Most Latin American countries have a horrendous problem with street crime. The exceptions are Chile and Uruguay. So, a man from a part of the world where haphazard law enforcement does real damage to the quality of life is ‘teaching’ us all by bitching about law enforcement, in this case supermax prisons for a small minority of convicts who are just stone evil.

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  • Doc Anthony

    So here’s the deal, Mr. Francis. If you are willing to have all of America’s current Supermax Criminals deported to the Vatican where you and your officials will be personally responsible for KEEPING them incarcerated for the duration of their sentences, (and no escapes!), then you can criticize the USA supermax prisons as “torture.”

    Otherwise, please go back to transforming the Catholic Church into a Gay-Marriage Church. That’s your REAL goal anyway!!!

  • Ouch.

  • No, but you do recall that “And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.

    A traditionalist Catholic priest (contemplating the voluminous writings of John Paul) had this to say, “the Pope’s not supposed to say too much”. The teaching is well articulated and his words can cause confusion. Every Pope bar one (who was only on the Chair of Peter for a month) in the last century has been an academic theologian or a veteran of the Holy See’s diplomatic service. These were men accustomed to the discipline of choosing their words very carefully in their ministry. You can see the result of selecting a motormouth without scholarly chops or a history as a diplomat. I hope he doesn’t cold call your wife.

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  • Conor

    The job of the pope is to issue spiritual guidance to God’s church. How can you say this is not based off of Sacred Scripture or Sacred Tradition when the Catechism of the Church addresses this issue? He very closely paraphrases the Catechism as saying that the death penalty is justified under a certain set of conditions and then goes on to say that he doesn’t think those conditions exist.

    We are still free to use our prudential judgment on the issue but it is helpful for many people to have this input from a spiritual leader. Not every Catholic has the time to investigate every matter thoroughly and not every Catholic understands how to apply the teachings of the Magisterium to every issue. Pope Francis is doing his job.