The Memo From Heaven to Hell on the Unexcommunication of Galileo

Translated from the Latin



To Our Most Unholy Lucifer,


Certainly you have heard the rumors of Our Church's edict lifting the excommunication of Galileo.  They are true.


After waiting several hundred years for Galileo to seek absolution, Our Church has decided to act on its own initiative and reconsider his case.  Part of the challenge of vindicating Galileo has been the edict that an excomm can introduce no legal action before the ecclesiastical tribune; thus, Galileo has been forbidden to testify on his own behalf.  Equally challenging is the mandate that the faithful cannot interact with excomms on spiritual matters – even towards reconciliation – under pain of mortal sin.  In any case, Galileo has been dead for the majority of the investigation, a nearly-insurmountable hurdle for any organization that forbids calling forth the dead.


We do find it interesting just how generally misunderstood excommunication is.  It was created not for the purpose of censoring loud, abrasive enemies of Our Church – you have not been excommunicated, have you? – nor for punishing priests who teach heresy despite continued admonition from Our Church.  (Don't worry; you'll have Martin Luther with you for some time yet.  The Excomm Review Board is waiting until the Lutherans finally give up their damned foolishness and sheepishly reunite with Rome.)  Rather, Our Church quite clearly teaches that excommunication is for the sake of the excomms, and that the only real consideration is their welfare. Thus, to speed their rehabilitation they are cut off from the soul-healing sacraments, especially that most efficacious of Graces, the Eucharist, in which only those without sin may participate. Obviously they could not learn from the saintly example of their betters and spiritual leaders; perhaps the damned and abandoned of the Earth can succeed with these lost sheep where Our Church has failed. 


It is commonly believed that Galileo was excommunicated for his heresy of planetary theory. This was but the slightest of his infractions.  Galileo did not have faith in the planetary system model; he proved it.  However, he lived in an age where faith, quite frankly, was all the faithful had.  For one cannot have faith in something one can prove: faith is belief even in the face of proof to the contrary.  (This is the reason We do not prove Our existence, for then where would be faith?)  Unfortunately, while the planetary facts were close enough to accurate, others of the ideas upon which he chose to expound were pathetic and obviously in error.  There were many who believed all he said because a morsel of it was true.  In this his voice was in competition with Our own priests.  The faithful can be so fickle and sometimes need to be protected from themselves.


Galileo's greatest error lie in that he worked hardest against those trying to help him most.  He refused to accept that perhaps the Church was not ready to face that it was not the center of the universe around which all the Saints and Ourself revolved.  He cared for the truth too much for his own good, refusing to remain silent after repeated warnings.  Finally, he was like a small child in his faith: loud, obnoxious, and unreasonable to the point of requiring saintly patience.  While tact may not be one of the Seven Heavenly Virtues, lacking it in the quantities Galileo did can eventually lead to excommunication.[1]


Was Galileo unjustly excommunicated?  Such a question is hardly worth asking, considering that whatever Our One True Church chooses to hold bound on Earth, We are bound to hold in Heaven.  The Philosopher[2] also covered Our Church by proving that the victim of an unjust excommunication should bear it with grace.  Excommunication, just or unjust, is after all for the good of the excomm and in both cases helps build character.  We hope that Galileo has borne his sourjorn with you with dignity, humility, and gratitude, and no apologies are necessary when you release him to our care.


We suspect there may be other unexcommunications in the near future, but perhaps not since the majority of condemned souls don't have quite the legal resources or high profile of a figure such as Galileo.  Considering it took several hundred years to clear his name, only We know how long a forgotten soul with no earthly champion will have to endure your charms while awaiting reconciliation.


Admittedly, Our Church may have left Galileo with you a tad longer than necessary, but no real harm done.  Time with you is like polishing brass; the longer the scouring, the brighter the result.





[1] To see one justification of Galileo's excommunication because of his damnable lack of tact, visit

[2] God is referring to St. Thomas Aquinas and his Summa Theologica.



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