The Role of the Constitutions of a Religious Institute of Diocesan Right to Define its Relationship With the Bishop: A Particular Reference to the Institute of the Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (Nigeria)

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Title: The Role of the Constitutions of a Religious Institute of Diocesan Right to Define its Relationship With the Bishop: A Particular Reference to the Institute of the Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (Nigeria)
Authors: Giegbefumwen, Stella E.
Date: 2014-05-15
Abstract: The objective of the thesis is to determine that the constitutions of religious institutes have a role in fostering the relationship between bishops and religious institutes. It outlines the historical development of rules and constitutions in orders and religious institutes and posits that the Church continuously underscores the importance of rules and constitutions in these institutions. Furthermore, with Vatican II and the directives of Ecclesia sanctae, the Church required institutes to review their constitutions and ensure in the ius vigens that these constitutions have the essential elements regarding their patrimony, norms of governance, discipline, incorporation, formation and the proper object of the sacred bonds, as a way for institutes to protect the unique gift of the Spirit expressed in the vocation and identity of each institute. The thesis also sketches the history of the relationship between religious institutes and bishops. It notes that though the Church has several legislation and instructions on this matter including Vatican II, various post-conciliar documents as well as the ius vigens of the Church which continue to outline aspects of the relationship, tensions and difficulties persist between the parties. In order to determine the role that the constitutions of religious institutes have in fostering this relationship, the thesis utilizes the constitutions of a non-clerical religious institute of diocesan right to examine how an institute defines aspects of its relationship with diocesan bishops identified in the ius vigens of the Church. The thesis observes that though the constitutions respond to majority of the aspects of the relationship, some matters were either lacking or not clearly and inadequately defined. Consequently, in order to enhance the relationship and minimize tensions and difficulties, the thesis underscores the necessity to respond to the inadequacies and lacunae in the constitutions as well as a review of some aspects of the relationship defined in the ius vigens of the Church. Additionally, the thesis proposes other ways to foster the relationship; these include the adequate formation of members of institutes on the different aspects of the relationship, the education of clerics on the value of consecrated persons in the Church, the need for bishops to be familiar with the constitutions of religious institutes and the need to establish a neutral structure in dioceses or at the Episcopal conferences to collaborate with CICLSAL in resolving cases that bother on this relationship. To sum up, the thesis accentuates the significance of clear and precise universal legislation and the constitutions of religious institutes in bringing about communion between institutes and particular churches.
URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10393/31109
http://dx.doi.org/10.20381/ruor-771
CollectionThèses Saint-Paul // Saint Paul Theses
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