Pope Canon Law Crimes
Title: Pope says revision of canon law section on crime, penalties is necessary
Author: Cindy Wooden
ROME — The 12-year process of updating the Code of Canon Law section dealing with crimes and penalties was necessary “to make it more organic and responsive to new situations and problems,” Pope Francis said.
Meeting Feb. 21 with members and staff of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts, Francis said the work of revising Book VI of the Code of Canon Law, “Sanctions in the Church,” also was needed “to offer suitable instruments for facilitating its application.”
In a 2013 interview with Catholic News Service, Bishop Juan Ignacio Arrieta, secretary of the council, said the current code was drafted in “a period that was a bit naive” in regard to the need for a detailed description of offenses, procedures for investigating them and penalties to impose on the guilty.
It reflected a feeling that “we are all good,” he had said, and that “penalties should be applied rarely.”
In his speech to council members, Pope Francis said the council’s work on revising the section had reached a conclusion, but he did not indicate when he would promulgate the revised section of canon law.