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Wednesday, 23 January 2008

Code of Canon Law silver jubilee

I remember the publication of the Code of Canon Law in Rome in 1983. Ed Koroway (now "Father") rushed me a copy hot off the press which I gratefully received in the tea room at the English College. (I had a small part later in helping him with the Latin for his defence of a doctoral thesis on latae sententiae excommunications in the new code - information I have always retained.)

In class that week, Fr Reginald Foster was snarling about a mistake in the sequence of tenses in the introduction. Our course with Fr Ghirlanda on the Lex Ecclesiae Fundamentalis was a dead letter because the LEF was not, in the event, promulgated.

Archbishop Coccopalmerio has said on the occasion of the canonical jubilee that the Code is like a "large and complex painting". Well that is one way of putting it. In any case, congratulations to canonists everywhere. Thank you for releasing the rest of us from this drudgery. I spent a short time as defender of the bond in the second instance tribunal but managed to get out of it in favour of teaching theology to the permanent deacons-to-be. This was a relief not only to me but also to the canonists of the diocese.
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