Canonical sanctions and the laity

Dear Editor, If a Catholic priest/religious stated that they were in favour of redefining marriage between a man or woman, or that, equally preposterous, abortion or women’s ordination were likewise correct they would face canonical sanctions. On April 29 the Stormont Assembly defeated a proposal to redefine marriage, where not one Nationalist (Catholic) politician voted against, even when their bishops called them to.  Does this mean that only clergy will face discipline, while the laity (politicians) will not?

While a priest took vows of obedience etc., surely the vows of Baptism, which these politicians (hopefully!) renewed at Easter, means that to state in a vote a refusal to listen to their shepherd’s pleas, makes them equally susceptible to discipline?

Yours etc.,

Fr John McCallion,