Catechism of the Catholic Church

Life in Christ 547 Intentional homicide 2268 The fifth commandment forbids direct and intentional kill- ing as gravely sinful. The murderer and those who cooperate vol­ untarily in murder commit a sin that cries out to heaven for vengeance. 69 Infanticide, 70 fratricide, parricide, and the murder of a spouse are especially grave crimes by reason of the natural bonds which they break. Concern for eugenics or public health cannot justify any murder, even if commanded by public authority. 2269 The fifth commandment forbids doing anything with the intention of indirectly bringing about a person’s death. The moral law prohibits exposing someone to mortal danger without grave reason, as well as refusing assistance to a person in danger. The acceptance by human society of murderous famines, without efforts to remedy them, is a scandalous injustice and a grave offense. Those whose usurious and avaricious dealings lead to the hunger and death of their brethren in the human family indirectly commit homicide, which is imputable to them. 71 Unintentional killing is not morally imputable. But one is not exonerated from grave offense if, without proportionate rea­ sons, he has acted in a way that brings about someone’s death, even without the intention to do so. Abortion 2270 Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception. From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person—among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life. 72 Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you. 73 My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately wrought in the depths of the earth. 74 69 Cf. Gen 4:10. 70 Cf. GS 51 § 3. 71 Cf. Am 8:4-10. 72 Cf. CDF, Donum vitae I, 1. 73 Jer 1:5; cf. Job 10:8-12; Ps 22:10-11. 74 Ps 139:15. 1867 2290 1703 357