Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Tim Staples, Steve Ray and a room full of young people.

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Canon Law Case. You Decide.

by Steve Ray on November 13, 2012

Good morning class. Our canon law topic for today is irregularity for the exercise of orders arising from mutilation. As you know:

Canon 1041 states “The following are irregular for receiving orders: . . . n. 5. A person who has mutilated himself or another gravely and maliciously or who has attempted suicide.”

Canon 1044 § 1 says “The following are irregular for the exercise of orders received: . . . n. 3. A person who has committed a delict mentioned in can. 1041, nn. 3, 4, 5, 6.” and

Canon 1397 reads “A person who commits a homicide or who kidnaps, detains, mutilates, or gravely wounds a person by force or fraud is to be punished . . . according to the gravity of the delict.”

Okay, let’s assume you’ve got two priests who get into a brawl and—why are they fighting? I dunno, let’s say they’re fighting over a parking space—anyway, while they are swinging away at each other, one bites an ear off the other. Clean off. Now, analyze the status of the biter and the bitee. Are either, neither, or both of them irregular for the exercise of orders due to mutilation? Cite the law, account for the facts, and explain your answers.

Any questions? Okay, then, see you this afternoon.

Excuse me? Whaddya mean, you don’t like my goofy classroom hypotheticals? Would it be more believable for you if I said these two clerics were, say, tough old Aussies? Anyway, who says this is a made-up case? Just for that, I’m gonna call on you first, young man.

See y’all this afternoon.

Taken from Ed Peters’ Canon Law Website.

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The Cross & the Crucifix: Letter to a Fundamentalist

by Steve Ray on November 13, 2012

The Cross & the Crucifix

(From a letter Steve wrote to a Evangelical Protestant who asked about the Catholic Crucifix)


Dear Evangelical Friend:

You display a bare cross in your home; we display the cross and the crucifix. What is the difference and why? The cross is an upright post with a crossbeam in the shape of a “T”. A crucifix is the same, but it has Christ’s body (corpus) attached to the cross.

As an Evangelical Protestant I rejected the crucifix, as you do—Christ was no longer on the cross; he had ascended into heaven. So why do I now tremble in love and awe at the site of a crucifix? Let’s examine the history and issues surrounding the two.

I will provide a brief overview of the Cross and the Crucifix, the origin, the history, and the differing perspectives of Catholic and Protestant. It will try to catch the historical flow and include the pertinent points. The outline is as follows:


1. The Three Main Protestant Objections to the Crucifix
2. Images and Gods in the Old Testament
3. Images and Images of Christ in the New Testament
4. The Cross in the First Centuries
5. The Crucifix Enters the Picture
6. The “Reformation” and Iconoclasm
7. Modern Anti-Catholics and the Crucifix
8. Ecumenical Considerations

To read the whole article, click here. To read Steve’s other articles, click here. For Steve’s talk “The Pain of the Crucifixion,“ click here.

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The Butler Did It, but Should the Pope Pardon

November 13, 2012

New post on In the Light of the Law by Dr. Ed Peters Some thoughts on a possible papal pardon for Paolo Gabriele by Dr. Edward Peters The ink was hardly dry on Paolo Gabriele’s conviction last month for stealing hundreds of confidential documents out of Pope Benedict XVI’s personal quarters when there was open [...]

Read the full article →