Church punishments are regulated in the 6th book of the Codex Iuris Canonici (CIC) (since 1983 in cann. 1311-1399).
Conditions of criminal liability
The 6th book of the CIC regulates the applicability of the church's criminal provisions, the personal prerequisites for criminal liability such as criminal maturity or culpability as well as the assessment of sentences including possible grounds for exclusion or remission, as well as the imposition of penalties (criminal proceedings).
Offenses against religion and the unity of the church such as schism and heresy , offenses against ecclesiastical authorities and the freedom of the church, for example who does not obey the Apostolic See, the ordinary or the superior who lawfully commands or prohibits, are punished with a church penalty and persists in disobedience after being warned, furthermore presumptuousness and breach of official duties, so-called forgery offenses such as defamation or forgery of documents , offenses against life and freedom of human beings (including abortion ) and finally offenses against special obligations such as the attempt to enter into a civil marriage or contrary to celibacy in one to live in a marriage-like relationship.
A distinction must be made between the sentence and the offense .
Penalties are corrective or flexural penalties as well as expiatory penalties . As a preventive measure, penal safeguards (warning, reprimand) and penance (requirement to do any work of faith, piety or Caritas such as a penance pilgrimage or fasting) can also be pronounced. Compared to lay , both the church penalties as a possible and absolution by the priest ( confessor ) are pronounced, moreover, by the church jurisdiction .
Examples of known church punishments are:
- Penalties: excommunication (exclusion from the ecclesiastical community), suspension (prohibition of the exercise of office by a cleric ), interdict (prohibition of acts of worship )
- Atonement punishments: confinement (residence bans or prohibitions such as monastic detention ), punitive transfer to another office, dimission (release from the clergy)
- Ban from Church : Exclusion, verdict for wrongdoing in belief or morals
- Infamy : infamy , loss of honor
- Avoidance : in some communities such as the Old Mennonites , Amish , Hutterites , Jehovah's Witnesses and partly in Islam
Many of the above-mentioned punishments are no longer applied today or are not applied in the usual way. The excommunication has long had no secular legal consequences and since the abolition of the distinction between “minor” and “major” excommunication in 1869, it corresponds to the punishment of excommunication. Infamy was abolished in 1983. Today, the interdict is usually limited to the personal prohibition of participation in religious services and sacramental acts towards a cleric or official, while so-called local interdicts over entire places, territories or areas are no longer expressly provided for in applicable law.
- Peter CA Schels: Church punishments Small encyclopedia of the German Middle Ages
- Stefan Ihli: Codex Iuris Canonici online CIC / 1983 (lat./dt.), CCEO (lat.), CIC / 1917 (lat.), Dignitas connubii (lat./dt.), CA "Pastor bonus" (lat. / German). Tübingen 2008-2016
- Albin Eser : Criminal Law in State and Church. Some comparative observations (PDF; 2.5 MB) , in: Dieter Schwab (Hrsg.): Festschrift für Paul Mikat , Berlin 1989, pp. 493-513
- Book VI Penal Provisions in the Church ( Memento of the original from July 20, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.
- Clarification on Intentional Abortion, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith , L'Osservatore Romano , July 11, 2009
- Holy gate prison door canon lawyer Christoph Ohly on the Pope's letter on the "Jubiläumsablass", kathisch.de, September 3, 2015
- Unauthorized episcopal ordination: Holocaust denier Williamson excommunicated under canon law, Der Spiegel , March 21, 2015
- Heizer excommunicated, Scheuer disappoints ORF , May 22, 2014
- Harsh church punishment for Bernhard Kroll Die Welt , June 5, 2003