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Church and capital punishment

Luka Tomašević   ORCID icon ; Catholic Faculty of Theology, University of Split

Puni tekst: hrvatski, pdf (993 KB) str. 280-295 preuzimanja: 2.174* citiraj
APA 6th Edition
Tomašević, L. (2002). Crkva i smrtna kazna. Crkva u svijetu, 37 (3), 280-295. Preuzeto s
MLA 8th Edition
Tomašević, Luka. "Crkva i smrtna kazna." Crkva u svijetu, vol. 37, br. 3, 2002, str. 280-295. Citirano 18.09.2019.
Chicago 17th Edition
Tomašević, Luka. "Crkva i smrtna kazna." Crkva u svijetu 37, br. 3 (2002): 280-295.
Tomašević, L. (2002). 'Crkva i smrtna kazna', Crkva u svijetu, 37(3), str. 280-295. Preuzeto s: (Datum pristupa: 18.09.2019.)
Tomašević L. Crkva i smrtna kazna. Crkva u svijetu [Internet]. 2002 [pristupljeno 18.09.2019.];37(3):280-295. Dostupno na:
L. Tomašević, "Crkva i smrtna kazna", Crkva u svijetu, vol.37, br. 3, str. 280-295, 2002. [Online]. Dostupno na: [Citirano: 18.09.2019.]

This article analyzes the viability, legal validity and motivation of
capital punishment, in various societies as well as within the Church.
The first chapter examines its viability throughout history, from
"prejuridical" cultures to the "juridical" ones. The second chapter is
about the avvareness of dignity and value of human life in
contemporary time up to the present day. In tlie third part the author
presents the attitude of Christianity and Church tovvards it, in history
and today.
The progress of the awareness of human dignity and human
rights, as the right of life is, begins in the second half of XVII century.
The first voice against capital punishment comes from the Italian
lawyer C. Beccaria. His ideas will influence on the criminal law
reform, so that, at the end of 19 century and in 20 century, numerous
states start abolishing the capital punishment, introducing the
sentence of life imprisonment. However, capital punishment stih
exists and it is in practice in many countries in the world, in spite of
OUN deelarations and ever growing movement against the existence of
death penalty.
Early Christianiry was against the existence of death penalty as it
was against the Christian and human dignity, which is witnessed by
some Church Fathers. Nevertheless, under the influence of social
mentality and Roman law in the Middle Ages (XII century) even the
Church allows death penalty, because of public welfare of the
community, because of discouraging other possible criminals and
because of satisfying the criminal justice.
Throughout history there are very few Doctrine interventions on
the capital punishment. According to Pius XII, it is not the state that
has right of disposing of an individual's life, but the criminal himself
is the one who, because of his crime, deprives himself of the right of
life, and state authorities are only the executors of the punishment.
Today, when the idea of human dignity, value of human life and
inalienable right of life has grown ripe in sociery, the Church too, on
the level of its Doctrine, has become aware that capital punishment is
inappropriate in modern society. Holy Father is of the same opinion
as well as ali the bishops of the Catholic Church.

Ključne riječi
capital punishment; crime; evil deed; society; Christian community; Church theology; punishment, person; personal dignity; life; Doctrine

Hrčak ID: 38960



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