This is a list of some of the more notable people excommunicated by the Catholic Church. It includes only excommunications acknowledged or imposed by a decree of the Pope or a bishop in communion with him. Latae sententiae excommunications, those that automatically affect classes of people (members of certain associations or those who perform actions such as directly violating the seal of confession or carrying out an abortion), are not listed unless confirmed by a bishop or ecclesiastical tribunal with respect to certain individuals.
In Roman Catholic canon law, excommunication is a censure and thus a "medicinal penalty" intended to invite the person to change behavior or attitude that incurred the penalty, repent, and return to full communion. Excommunication severs one from communion with the Church; excommunicated Catholics are forbidden from receiving any sacrament and refused a Catholic burial, but are still bound by canonical obligations such as attending Mass or fasting seasonally. Excommunicated Catholics, however, are barred from receiving the Eucharist or from taking an active part in the liturgy (reading, bringing the offerings, etc.). They are still Catholics per se, but are separated from the Church.
Henry IV, Holy Roman Emperor, with 5 separate excommunications from 3 different Popes, carries the distinction of publicly being the most-excommunicated individual.
This article is missing information about the disputed claim that Fidel Castro was excommunicated. Please expand the article to include this information. Further details may exist on the talk page
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- All Catholics who participated in the creation of a Philippine Independent Church in the Philippines, in 1902
- Feliksa Kozłowska, Maria Michał Kowalski and the Mariavite movement in December 1906 by St Pius X
- Alfred Loisy, a French cleric associated with modernism (1908?).
- Father Romolo Murri, a leader of the Italian Catholic Democrats, for giving speeches against Papal policy (1909)
- Marshal Josip Broz Tito (1946) and all Catholics who participated in the trial of Archbishop Aloysius Stepinac of Zagreb and the trial of Archbishop József Mindszenty of Hungary, which included most of the jury members.
- Fr Michel Collin of France was excommunicated in 1951 for various heresies, and later declared himself Pope Clement XV.
- Fr Leonard Feeney, SJ on February 13, 1953 for disobedience to the Holy See. Feeney promoted Feeneyism, a view condemned by the Catholic Church. Fr. Feney was later reconciled to communion in the church without recanting his views.
- Juan Perón, in 1955, after he signed a decree ordering the expulsion of Argentine bishops Manuel Tato and Ramón Novoa In 1963 Perón was reconciled with the Church and his excommunication lifted.
- Plaquemines Parish President Leander Perez, Jackson G. Ricau (secretary of the Citizens Council of South Louisiana) and Mrs. B.J. Gaillot, Jr., president of Save Our Nation, Inc., on April 16, 1962 by Archbishop Joseph Rummel of the Archdiocese of New Orleans. They were excommunicated for aggressively opposing the racial integration of Catholic schools in the Archdiocese starting in the 1963-64 school year. Perez and Ricau were later reinstated into the Church following public retractions.
- Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, Bishops Antonio de Castro Meyer, Bernard Fellay, Bernard Tissier de Mallerais, Richard Williamson and Alfonso de Galarreta for the Ecône Consecrations (Society of St. Pius X) without papal mandate. Formally declared to have incurred latae sententiae excommunication by Cardinal Bernardin Gantin on July 1, 1988. The excommunications of the latter four (the bishops consecrated in that 1988 ceremony) were lifted in 2009; the first two (the consecrator and the co-consecrator) had died in the meantime. Williamson fell under a second excommunication after illicitly ordaining a bishop.
- Members of multiple organizations in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Lincoln, Nebraska were excommunicated by Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz in March 1996 for promoting positions he deemed "totally incompatible with the Catholic faith". The organizations include Call to Action, Catholics for a Free Choice, Planned Parenthood, the Hemlock Society, the Freemasons, and the Society of St. Pius X. The Vatican later confirmed the excommunication of Call to Action members in November 2006, but in 2017, the current bishop of Lincoln met with leadership of the group and proposed a way for individuals to be reconciled to the Church, without having to renounce their membership in the organization, as long as they reaffirmed their commitment to all of Church teaching.
- After Bishop Michael Cox consecrated Pat Buckley a bishop without papal approval, both were excommunicated.