Petru Ciobanu: Incurrunt in excommunicationem: brief history of canonic punishment of abortion

According to the 1983 Code of Canon Right, the person guilty of abortion, followed by the effect, automatically falls into the excommunication latae sententiae given to the bishop. This article sets out the penalties for this crime, which the Second Vatican Council called an “abominable crime” (GS 51). The punishments based on the Holy Scripture are reviewed, then those provided by the councils of the first millennium and those proposed by the patristic teaching, and then, to analyze the penitential manuals and Byzantine right, following the presentation of abortion punishments in medieval jurisprudence and pontifical teaching until the codification of canon right. At the end, the text shows the punishments prescribed by the codes of canon right – that of 1917, that of 1983 and that of the Eastern Churches –, ending with an incursion into Orthodox law.

Dialog 46-2_Ciobanu

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