Marijuana use is a sin regardless of legality

Marijuana will become legal in Canada in October, but using it will remain a sin, Canada’s bishops say.

It “violates the virtue of temperance” and should be avoided unless being used for medicinal purposes.

“The virtue … ‘disposes us to avoid every kind of excess: the abuse of food, alcohol, tobacco or medicine,’” Frank Leo, general secretary of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops says.

“In a particular way, the catechism underscores that the use of any drug, except on strictly therapeutic grounds, is also a ‘grave offence’ – for the use of drugs inflicts very grave damage on human health and life.”

Another Canadian bishop says: “Recreational use of substances – whether marijuana, other drugs and opioids – is part of a continuum of consumption of substances that allow people to escape what they regard as the burdens and challenges of life.

“Bishops, priests, catechists, youth and pastoral care workers will need to give teaching on temperance and how it comes into play in the decisions we take.

“Guidelines for confessors should help them assist penitents with wise guidance in this matter.”

He says the guidelines will be comparable to “addressing other contemporary problems such as the plague of pornography.”

Parental involvement in teaching their children not to use marijuana is important.

“Our bodies are ours to use, but we have to account one day to the Lord as to how we took care of them and what we did with them,” he says.

“Is it a good idea to knowingly use a substance that produces harmful effects? Is this wise stewardship?”

In 2017, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops issued a statement pointing to studies showing “marijuana as a ‘gateway drug,’ underscoring the propensity of users to consume it in combination with other licit and illicit drugs, including some which may be ‘harder.'”

Canada’s minimum age for the legal use of marijuana has been set at 18. However, many provinces are planning to increase the minimum age to 19.


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News category: World.

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