Q: During this Jubilee Year, “Missionaries of Mercy” have been sent around the world with special powers to lift excommunications. The Vatican Archbishop who made this announcement mentioned the excommunicable crime of physical violence against the Pope, and said that this includes speech which criticizes him. This was a great shock to me… can we Catholics really be excommunicated if we say something negative about the Pope? What happens when a fellow bishop or a personal friend speaks to Pope Francis, and finds fault with something he said or did, is he penalized for daring to object? Criticism can often be a healthy thing. To me it sounds like a police state… –Matteo Continue reading
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About the authorCathy Caridi, J.C.L., is an American canon lawyer who practices law and teaches in Rome. She founded this website to provide clear answers to canonical questions asked by ordinary Catholics, without employing all the mysterious legalese that canon lawyers know and love. In the past Cathy has published articles both in scholarly journals and on various popular Catholic websites, including Real Presence Communications and Catholic Exchange.
- Canon lawyers are not responsible for the content of canon law. The Supreme Legislator is. Only Pope Francis can change the Code of Canon Law, so if you're not happy with what the law says, please take it up with him.