Canon Law

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Copy of the manuscript of " Decretum Gratiani "

The canon law is the science of canon law , the canon law , in particular the Roman Catholic Church . It is considered a theological discipline . Its beginnings go back to the year 1140 with the Decretum Gratiani , it was the main work of the Camaldolese monk Gratian , who is considered the father of canonical studies .


Gratian was a teacher of canon law at the Faculty of Law at the University of Bologna . With his collection and summary of canons and decretals , which bears the title "Concordia discordantium canonum", the contradictions should be hermeneutically balanced (interpretation, interpretation). Pope Alexander III (1159–1181), who went down in history as the “pope of lawyers”, was the one who sent his papal decrees to Gratian for incorporation into the canon collection. This fact had the consequence that the legal provisions of the other popes were taken up and collected in a document form. The resulting basic stock was expanded by the Liber Extra from Pope Gregory IX. (1230–1324), followed in 1298 by Pope Boniface VIII (1294–1303) ordered “Liber Sextus”. In 1317 the “ Constitution Clementinae ” was incorporated by Pope Clement V , this was a collection of papal decrees from the Council of Vienne (1311/12). At the end of the 15th century, the so-called “ Extravagantes Communes ”, which are also very important for canon law, and the Extravagantes Johannis XXII followed. , which consisted of previously unregistered papal letters .

Canonism as a theological discipline

“As a theological discipline, canon law researches sources and theological foundations of applicable law, conveys the competencies for the application of law within the framework of the theology studies and thereby and through its participation in the creation of law helps to adequately cope with the legal-pastoral challenges of today. "

Canon Law in University Law

1853 was by Pius IX. (1846–1878) established the Faculty of Canon Law and Civil Law and founded the Pontifical Institute utriusque iuris at the Pontifical Lateran University . In 1947 the Canonical Institute was founded at the Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich . Since 2001 it has been the Klaus Mörsdorf degree in canonology. It is a scientific institution ad instar facultatis for canon law in teaching and research. This is where the specialist journal “ Archive for Catholic Church Law ” and the academic series “Munich Theological Studies. Canonical Department ”and“ Dissertations. Canonical series ”published. The Institute for Canon Law at the Westphalian Wilhelms University is in Münster . The canon scholar is called a "canonist" and does not necessarily have to be a cleric .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Hans-Jürgen Guth: Canonistics and Medicine. In: Werner E. Gerabek , Bernhard D. Haage, Gundolf Keil , Wolfgang Wegner (eds.): Enzyklopädie Medizingeschichte. De Gruyter, Berlin / New York 2005, ISBN 3-11-015714-4 , p. 715 f .; here: p. 715.
  2. Ruling opinion. Regarding the dispute Gregor Bier: Introduction to Canon Law. In: Clauß Peter Sajak : Practical Theology. Module 4. Schöningh, Paderborn 2012 (UTB; 3472), ISBN 978-3-8252-3472-0 , p. 126 f.
  3. ^ Gregor Bier: Introduction to Canon Law. In: Clauß Peter Sajak : Practical Theology. Module 4. Schöningh, Paderborn 2012 (UTB; 3472), ISBN 978-3-8252-3472-0 , p. 129