Dignitas infinita: placing respect for the dignity of the human person at the centre

The statement of the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith is available on our website
Photo: Vatican News

Photo: Vatican News



The statement of the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith, Dignitas infinita – a document commemorating the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – was published yesterday on 8 April 2024.

The document, now in seven languages, is also available on our website and affirms “the indispensable nature of the dignity of the human person in Christian anthropology” (Introduction).

The result of five years’ work, the Declaration presents a “not comprehensive” list of “some grave violations of human dignity”, that is, “against life itself, such as murder, genocide, abortion, euthanasia, and wilful suicide” as well as “all violations of the integrity of the human person, such as mutilation, physical and mental torture, and undue psychological pressures”.

And finally, “all offenses against human dignity, such as subhuman living conditions, arbitrary imprisonment, deportation, slavery, prostitution, the selling of women and children, degrading working conditions where individuals are treated as mere tools for profit rather than free and responsible persons”. The death penalty, which “violates the inalienable dignity of every person, regardless of the circumstances”, is also mentioned (34).

The Declaration concludes by exhorting “that respect for the dignity of the human person beyond all circumstances be placed at the centre of the commitment to the common good and at the centre of every legal system” (64).

09 April 2024
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