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means he took, but it would not be incidental in reference to his intentions.' I am glad once more to be able to quote the Canon's testimony to the fact that this particular hunger-strike objectively involves merely indirect self-killing, for it may, therefore, be justified for a sufficiently grave cause. But I cannot see why the death must be direct in respect of the striker's intentions. I cannot see why Canon Waters is obsessed with the idea that strikes necessarily 'intend their own death as a means of wringing concessions from the Government.' If a man thinks his honour compromised may he go on hunger-strike when abstinence will not kill him by a law of his constitution'? The death is incidental in respect of the means he takes; is it not according to the Canon's own teaching (page 20) also incidental in respect of his intentions? Once again, I wonder has the Canon a clear grasp of the nature of direct and indirect killing.

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Let us resurrect our friend the Carthusian for just one moment. The Canon thinks he has a grievance against me for criticizing his answers to his own difficulties. But surely he was bound to raise and answer those difficulties, if he wished to give a complete presentation of his case. It was the way of the master of all theologians.' An unanswered objection means an unproven thesis-hence the justification of my criticism. I had not lost my bearings, though the Canon thinks so. I have no interest,' he says (page 24), 'in saving the Carthusian-my critic has, if he only knew it. If the Carthusian is a suicide the case against hunger-strike is already decided a fortiori.' The Canon had no interest whatsoever in saving the Carthusian-probably he is now sorry that he did-but having 'saved him he was bound to answer the resulting difficulties. Neither have I myself the slightest interest' in saving him, for the Canon's a fortiori argument is utterly untheological. I condemned the Carthusian because I could not bring myself to believe that there is, in the case made, a fair proportion between the good and evil consequences. I did not condemn the striker because I thought such a proportionately grave compensating cause might be present. It is curious that the Canon should think that I would save the Carthusian if I had an interest' in doing so I trust that we are both out for truth and not for victory.

Turning to the Wolfe Tone case. The reader will remember that the deduction was an argumentum ad hominem

based on the Canon's own assertions. He now says the deduction was unwarranted: 'what I said was that no one is obliged to take means which are obviously insufficient to preserve life-this does not warrant the extravagant inference that therefore a man may take most efficacious means to put an end to his life.' I do not know where exactly we are now. I thought that self-starvation was, according to Canon Waters, a most efficacious means of putting an end to life he had called it self-killing, suicide, the direct cause of the closing of life. Wolfe Tone and Captain Oates anticipated their death by some time, both by efficacious means. Whence, then, does the difference arise? Is it from the fact that there was in the one case an act, in the other an omission? Scarcely, for according to Canon Waters, 'the difference between act and omission counts for nothing of importance in morals.' 1

I have done with Canon Waters. I regret that I have felt compelled to 'thrust my doubts upon the public' a second time, but I think it due to the readers of the I. E. RECORD that no man should be allowed to fling about the epithets 'suicide' and 'criminal' without proving to the hilt that he is justified in doing so. The need for my action is all the greater because of the ecclesiastical dignity and the recognised learning of Canon Waters.


1 I. E. RECORD, August, 1918, Fifth Series, vol. xii. p. 93.






REV. DEAR SIR,-In the current issue of the I. E. RECORD you hold that the impediment of affinity always arises from a valid, and propriety' always from an invalid, marriage. So the law states, I admit; but I have a suspicion that the letter of the law may be modified by expert interpretation or by practice. The matter is one of serious importance. Might I call your attention to the parallel case of lawful and unlawful' affinity under the old law? The words there were definite enough also; but you will remember that-in the case of a marriage supposed to be valid, but really invalid-several canonists held that the rule about 'lawful' affinity should be applied, and that the impediment should be extended to the fourth degree. Now, in that case, the acts that led to the impediment were really unlawful: the only saving fact was that the people concerned were, on account of their ignorance, not held responsible. The test applied, therefore, was not that of objective fact, but of subjective responsibility.

My suggestion is that the same principle may now be adopted: and that in the given case of a marriage really invalid, but regarded as valid by all concerned-the impediment arising is 'affinity' not 'propriety.' Perhaps you would refer to the matter in the next issue.



REV. DEAR SIR,-IS Canon 1077, § 2, 2°, correctly stated? A and B are anxious to marry. A has already been married to C and D, both of them first cousins to B-one on the father's side, the other on the mother's. Is there a double relationship between A and B? If so, where are they mentioned in Canon 1077, § 2?



An appeal from the letter of the law' to 'expert interpretation and 'practice' is generally the prelude to some liberal statement regarding obligations. Not so in the statement by 'Confessarius.' He wants to have certain invalid marriages rank as valid; and the practical result would be to establish impediments where otherwise none would have existed. For, comparing Canons 1077 and 1078, we find that the first is much the more serious. Propriety' would involve only two degrees of the direct line (1078); 'affinity' affects, in addition, all the other degrees of the direct line, and the first two of the collateral (1077).

That itself is enough to make us cautious about accepting the suggestion. And, on the plain merits of the case, we are opposed to it. 'Confessarius' states the position well, but we believe it will never be adopted-in practice at least. Our reasons are:


1o. The words of the law are opposed to it. admits, and we need not delay on the matter. Of course, even when the law makes no distinction, we may make one of our own, if we have got a sufficient reason. But the reason suggested by 'Confessarius' is not strong enough to justify us in tampering with the law. His parallel is incomplete. 'Lawfulness,' after all, is closely related to subjectivity; ' validity' is not. Acts are, of course, objectively right or wrong; but the fact remains that many acts may be objectively wrong and subjectively right, and vice versa. In our correspondent's case of putative marriage the ‘acts that led to the impediment' were certainly objectively wrong; it is equally certain that they were subjectively right. Should they, then, be regarded as right simpliciter in their bearing on affinity? That was a problem on which different views might be reasonably held and the contradictory answers, actually given, led to the divergent results favoured by the canonists. But 'validity' is quite a different matter it is something inherent in things themselves, and quite independent of the views, correct or incorrect, that we hold regarding them.

We may add that, even under the old law, a stronger protest would likely have been made against the view referred to by Confessarius,' were it not that another impediment, extending to the fourth degree, probably existed anyhow-the former impediment of public propriety.1

2o. Whatever about theory, the view suggested will, we think, have no effect in practice. For, unless we are greatly mistaken, the opinion we favour-based as it is on the words carefully selected by the most expert canonists in the Church-will be regarded as at least probable. That is enough for our purpose. For, as regards impediments involved in Canon 1077 but not in Canon 1078-two in the collateral line, and all but two in the direct-there will be a 'doubt of law.' And, as we know from an earlier Canon (15), when there is a 'doubt of law' there is no obligation whatever imposed by Church legislation. The result, therefore, will be the same as if the view we have expressed were absolutely certain.1


'Scotus' raises a point that, we must confess, we had not thought of before. It would seem at first sight that A and B are doubly related. The marriage with C, if it stood alone, would involve one relationship: so would the marriage with D, if it stood alone: when both are combined, why should there not be a double effect? The older law would suggest the same: it provided for a multiple impediment when, of two individuals, one had had intercourse with several blood-relations of the other.' But-apart from the exceptional case in which C and D are


1 See Lehmkuhl, Th. Mor., ii. n. 998; Marc, Inst. Mor. Alph., ii. n. 2034, etc.

related independently of their descent from B's grandparents-it is quite clear that A has not yet 'contracted marriage subsequently with a bloodrelation of a deceased partner' (1077, § 2, 2°).

So we may echo 'Scotus" query, 'Yes, where are they?' In the transition from the old law to the new, the second portion of the double impediment would seem to have fallen out. That, we may take it, was the intention of the legislator. The obvious purpose of Canons 1076 and 1077 is to lessen the number of impediments, of the 'multiple kind as well as of the 'simple.' Another old-time double impediment of affinity that would seem quite as natural as the one now suggested— it arose when each of the individuals had had intercourse with a bloodrelation of the other '-has, in so far as it is multiple,' no successor in the Code. The same thing would seem to have happened in the case submitted by 'Scotus.'

It is surprising. But so are many other things that we are glad to accept.


REV. DEAR SIR,-1°. Are septuagenarians, whose means do not entitle them to the Old Age Pension, justified in receiving it?

2o. Here is a case in which I am interested: An old lady, without means, secured the Old Age Pension, in January, 1918. In April, 1918, she came into a pension of £60 a year for life from another source. She continued receiving the Old Age Pension till October, 1918, when the officer withdrew it, and ordered her to refund the amount received since April-about £10. Is she bound in justice to do so?

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The principles on which the reply depends have been stated. in earlier issues of the I. E. RECORD, If Sacerdos' consults the March (1909) and June (1910) numbers-pp. 301-5 and 630-1, respectivelyhe will have no trouble in solving the problem.


REV. DEAR SIR,-A person retaining her domicile in parish A, acquires a quasi-domicile in parish B, being appointed probationer nurse in an institution there for a term of three years. After a year, she dies in the institution, is brought home, waked, and buried in parish A. Offerings are given, but exclusively by friends in her home parish.

I have seen some discussions on cases [somewhat similar, but not identical, and so would respectfully put before you some few points for your consideration, and ask the favour of a reply in the I. E. RECORD.

(1) The decree re offerings in the Armagh Synod refers only to the case of death occurring outside one's parish, and its authors contemplated in this connexion only the case of a person dying outside his domicile '-whatever this term means.

(2) It seems to me this term should get its ordinary meaning, unless there is some overpowering reason for a different one; for (a) in such a decree we must believe great care was taken in selecting clear and

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