Saturday, September 08, 2007

A starting point for Catholic Separatist discussions

For discussion, the current official catechism provides in paragraph 2243 as follows:

Armed resistance to oppression by political authority is not legitimate, unless all the following conditions are met: 1) there is certain, grave, and prolonged violation of fundamental rights; 2) all other means of redress have been exhausted; 3) such resistance will not provoke worse disorders; 4) there is well-founded hope of success; and 5) it is impossible reasonably to foresee any better solution.

First, what is the source of the teaching in this paragraph? There is no footnote in the text. Aquinas? A papal encycical (hopefully pre-Vatican II)? An ecumenical council?

Second, do any conditions (other than #4) remain unsatisfied?

Third, does anyone seriously believe that even #4 is satisfied?

PS, I know I could find the answer to my first question if I weren't too cheap to buy a Denzinger or too lazy to go to the evil local Jesuit college's library.


Alison said...

I believe that it was Thomas Aquinas. This is only an educated guess from similar discussions from my younger days.
I would find it hard to prove that all means of redress have been exhausted.

Curmudgeon said...

Thanks Alison.

I'm really looking for some citiations, folks! Somebody (one of the six of you still out there) do my homework for me!

Curmudgeon said...

Alison, I think there's a strong case to be made that there is no redress--the mob has won.

Alison said...

It will take some emailing because I know who I had the conversation with years ago. I know they know where it came from as this person is a scholarly Catholic geek who can tell me. We are just a little bit busier now so give me some time out but I will get a citation.

Also, remember, I have read The Book and we win in the end.

Anonymous said...

Looks like it kind of follows the condition for Just War. But is it just made up for the catechism or has there been some theological development behind this passage? The Catholic Church is not a revolutionary Church despite the love affair many of its clergy have had with communism the last half century.

But Church teachings do not seem to half caught up with the reality of the evil nature of most secular, democratic regimes. Can rebelling against a government that is attempting to suppress the Church be an imperative while rebelling against a Catholic monarch be a sin?

In any case, the catechism entry is far better than the current Evangelical Protestant attitude that a person's Christian faith requires submission to whatever political authority exitst, no matter how odius.