J001 – Canon Law in the Life of the Church


Course Information

Professor: Michael Kuchera, SJ

Schedule: Mon. I-II, 1st sem., 2 cr., 3 ECTS


  • Modern history: Pius IX (1846-1878) to John Paul II (1978-2005).
  • Sacred Scripture and philosophy: Genesis, Romans, 1 John, Ireneaus, Tertullian, Boethius, Thomas Aquinas.
  • Nicaea, Constantinople, Ephesus, Theodosian Codex, Chalcedon, Constantinople Codex, Justinian Codex, Constantinople III, Trullanus, Nicaea II.
  • The ethico-religious basis of the law and the limits of positive law.
  • Canon law and its purpose.
  • Ius Antiquum (313-1141) and Ius Canonicum Classicum (1141-1545): Gratian, the Gregorian reform, Decretalists.
  • From Trent to Vatican I: legislation and jurisprudence of the Roman Curia; Schola Textus; Etsi pastoralia.
  • From Vatican I to Vatican II: the Code of Canon Law.
  • Sacred Canons, Nomocanons, and commentators of the XII century
  • The four motu proprio and the elaboration of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches.
  • Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches as an Oriental and ecumenical code.
  • Alignment of CIC and CCEO and comparison with the civil law of various judicial systems.


To introduce Eastern and Western canon law with the aim of developing a juridical mentality based on sound judgement.


Directory for the Application of Principles and Norms on Ecumenism, Vatican City 1993;


Præfatio ad CCEO, Vaticano 1995;


W. Plöchl, Storia del Diritto Canonico, Milano 1963;


J. Ratzinger, The Crisis of Law, Rome 1999.