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The First Ten Years of the Centre for Law and Religion, Cardiff University

  • Norman Doe (a1) (a2)

On 8–9 July 2007 at Brecon Cathedral, members of the Centre for Law and Religion held an inaugural annual away day to review its work and plan long-term strategy ahead of the tenth anniversary of the Centre in 2008. The success of the LLM in Canon Law, the first degree of its type at a British university since the Reformation (set up in 1991 with the support of the Ecclesiastical Law Society), led those involved in that course and others at Cardiff Law School to recognise the need for a community of scholars dedicated to the study of law and religion. The Centre was established in the summer of 1998 to promote research and its dissemination in this field. It was established with the approval of the university and the encouragement of the Department of Religious and Theological Studies. Its activities are carried out in relation to the theory and practice of substantive law concerning religion, the focus being principally upon religious law (especially canon law) and national and international law affecting religion, with regard to their historical, theological, social, ecumenical and comparative contexts.

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1 For further information about the Centre, see its website, <>, accessed on 11 October 2007.

2 The Centre's activities are: the exchange and development of ideas, through conferences, seminars and workshops, between academics, practitioners and others; the encouragement and development of research output; its dissemination through publications; provision of research posts; projects studying new developments in the field in the UK, to bring together academics and practitioners to consider topical issues of importance, and to print reports; provision of legal commentary to bodies at home and abroad; the development of links with home and overseas institutions, particularly universities in the USA and Europe; engagement in collaborative research with home and overseas institutions and scholars, and the welcome and support of visiting scholars; the dissemination of research output through assistance in the provision by the Law School of postgraduate degrees and other courses; the development of internationally recognised library collections on law and religion.

3 Professor Richard Helmholz, University of Chicago; Professor James Conn, Canon Law Faculty, Gregorian University, Rome; Professor John Witte, Centre for Law and Religion, Emory University, Atlanta; Professor Silvio Ferrari and Dr Cristiana Cianitto, University of Milan; Professor Gerhard Robbers, University of Trier, Germany; Professor Alessandro Ferrari, University of Insubria (Como, Italy); Professor Miguel Blanco, University of Alcala, Madrid; Michał Rynkowski, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Wroclaw, Poland; Stefan Muckl, University of Freiburg, Germany; Professor Brian Ferme, Dean of the Canon Law Faculty, Catholic University of America, Washington, DC; and Jiri Tretera at Prague.

4 For example, in 2003: Cristiana Cianitto, University of Milan (clergy remuneration); Sabrina Pastorelli, University of Paris (new religious movements); Stefan Muckl, University of Freiburg (religion and public law); Titus Kim Ho Wook, Korea (canon law). In 2004: Alessandro Ferrari, University of Milan (religion, law and sociology); Miguel Blanco, University of Alcala, Madrid (religious charities); Michał Rynkowski, University of Wroclaw, Poland (public law and religion); Elena Mannuci, University of Perugia (charities). In 2005: Noel Dias, Colombo University, Sri Lanka (religion and human rights); Gennaro Giordano, Perugia University, Italy (religious charities); Anna Gianfreda, Piacenza University, Italy (blasphemy law). In 2007: Irene Briones, Complutense University, Madrid (religious education); Alexandra Araujo, University of Pamplona (religion and European integration).

5 Including, in R O'Dair and A Lewis (eds), Law and Religion, Current Legal Issues Volume 4 (Oxford, 2001): M Hill, ‘Judicial approaches to religious disputes’, pp 409–420, N Doe and A Jeremy, ‘Justifications for religious autonomy’, pp 421–442, A Pearce, ‘Religious denomination or public religion: the legal status of the Church of England’, pp 457–470; in G Robbers (ed), Church Autonomy: a comparative survey (Frankfurt-am-Main, 2001): M Hill, ‘Church autonomy in the United Kingdom’, pp 267–284; in J Flauss Diem (ed), Secret, Religion, Normes Étatiques (Strasbourg, 2005): N Doe and R Ruston, ‘Secrets, religion and law in the United Kingdom’, pp 119–142; in A Thatcher (ed), Celebrating Christian Marriage (Edinburgh, 2002): A Pearce, ‘The Christian claims of the English law of marriage’, pp 403–420; in J Martínez-Torrón (ed), Estado y Religion en la Constitución Española y en la Constitución Europea (Granada, 2006): M Hill, ‘Iglesia y Estado: derechos y obligaciones en una constitución emergente’, pp 113–120.

6 Eg, F Cranmer and S Peterson, ‘Employment, sex discrimination and the churches: the Percy case’, (2006) 8 Ecc LJ 392–405; N Doe, ‘Ordination, canon law and pneumatology: validity and vitality in Anglican–Roman Catholic dialogue’, (2006) 8 Ecc LJ 406–424; A McGrath, ‘A question of interpretation: the Roman Rota and the theology of marriage’, (2006) 8 Ecc LJ 425–437; R Sandberg, ‘To equality and beyond: religious discrimination and the Equality Act 2006, (2006) 8 Ecc LJ 470–474; E D'Auria, ‘Sacramental sharing in Roman Catholic canon law: a comparison of approaches in Great Britain, Ireland and Canada’, (2007) 9 Ecc LJ 264–287. Mark Hill is the current editor of the Journal, while David Harte is book review editor and Frank Cranmer is parliamentary editor.

7 Eg, R Sandberg and M Hill, ‘Is nothing sacred? Clashing symbols in a secular world’, (2007) Public Law 488–506.

8 Eg, R Sandberg and N Doe, ‘Religious exemptions in discrimination law’, (2007) 66(2) Cambridge Law Journal 302–312.

9 Eg, A Jeremy, ‘Pacta sunt servanda: the influence of canon law upon the development of contractual obligations’, (2000) 144 Law and Justice 4–17; J Oliva, ‘British Ideas for the teaching of religion in state schools in Spain’, (2007) 158 Law and Justice 54–63. Currently, Javier Oliva serves as book review editor and Frank Cranmer is responsible for the case book and recent developments section.

10 Eg, F Cranmer, ‘Judicial review and church courts in the law of Scotland’, (1998) Denning Law Journal 49–66.

11 Eg, R Sandberg and N Doe, ‘The “State of the Union” – a canonical perspective: principles of canon law in the Anglican Communion’, (2006) 49 Sewanee Theological Review 234–236.

12 Eg, N Doe, ‘The Church in Wales and the State: a juridical perspective’, (2004) 2 Journal of Anglican Studies 99–124.

13 Eg, N Doe and N Dias, ‘Prosecutorial discretion and pre-trial process’, (2004) 16 Sri Lanka Journal of International Law 235–262.

14 Eg, N Doe and H Payne, ‘Public health and the limits of religious freedom’, (2005) 19 Emory International Law Review 539–555; M Hill, ‘The permissible scope of legal limitations on the freedom of religion or belief in the United Kingdom’, (2005) 19 Emory International Law Review 1129–1186.

15 Eg, R Sandberg and N Doe, ‘Church–state relations in Europe’, (2007) Religion Compass 561–578.

16 Eg, N Doe, ‘Pour une première analyse de la notion d’église nationale’, (2001) 43 L'Année Canonique 1–11; R Ombres, ‘La notion d’église nationale au royaume uni: l’église catholique romaine’, (2001) 43 L'Année Canonique 39–52.

17 Eg, N Doe and J Nicholson, ‘Das Verhaltnis von Gesellschaft, Staat und Kirche in Grossbritannien’, in B Kamper and M Schlagheck (eds), Zwischen Nationaler Identitat und Europaischer Harmonisierung, Staatskirchenrechtliche Abhandlungen, Band 36 (Berlin, 2002), 59–84.

18 Eg, J Oliva, ‘Considerations on the Church of England and its relationship with the state’, (2001) Anuario de Derecho Eclesiástico del Estado 363–437.

19 Eg, N Doe, ‘L'ordination des femmes dans les églises anglicanes du Royaume Uni’, (1996) 46 Revue de Droit Canonique 59–73.

20 Eg, F Cranmer and T Heffer, ‘Il diritto canonico della Chiesa d'Inghilterra: l'interpretazione delle Scritture è veramente necessaria per la salvezza?’, (2006) 6 Daimon 69–96 reproduced at pp 137–160 of this issue; N Doe and R Ombres, ‘Il minstero sacro nel diritto della communione anglicana e della chiesa di roma’, (2003) 3 Daimon 67–95.

21 Eg, P Colton, ‘Religion and law in dialogue: covenantal and non-covenantal cooperation of state and religion in Ireland’, in N Doe with R Puza (eds), Religion and Law in Dialogue: covenantal and non-covenantal cooperation between state and religion in Europe, Proceedings of the European Consortium on Church and State Research (Leuven, 2006), pp 93–114; P Barrett, ‘Episcopal visitations of cathedrals of the Church of England’, (2006) 8 Ecc LJ 266–288; J Humphreys, ‘The Civil Partnership Act, same-sex marriage and the Church of England’, (2006) 8 Ecc LJ 289–306; O Clark, ‘The ancient office of parish clerk and the Parish Clerks Company of London’, (2006) 8 Ecc LJ 307–322.

22 Eg, C Cianitto, ‘Maintenance of the clergy in the Italian Catholic Church’, (2005) 155 Law and Justice 137–142; M Blanco, ‘Religion and the law of charities’, (2006) 8 Ecc LJ 246–265.

23 See J Fox (ed), Render Unto Caesar: church property in Roman Catholic and Anglican canon law (Rome, 2000).

24 See M Hill (ed), Faithful Discipleship: clergy discipline in Anglican and Roman Catholic canon law (Cardiff, 2001).

25 See J Conn, N Doe and J Fox (eds), Initiation, Membership and Authority in Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Law (Rome, 2005).

26 For a full report, see pp 219–221 of this issue.

27 Law and Justice, 152 (2004) carried the following articles: J Oliva, ‘Sociology, law and religion in the United Kingdom’ (pp 8–26); A Ferrari in collaboration with J Nicholson, ‘France and Greece: two approaches to religious pluralism’ (pp 27–43); JA Alberca de Castro and J Oliva in collaboration with C Cianitto, ‘Sociology, law and religion in Italy and Spain’ (pp 44–67); and N Doe, ‘A sociology of law on religion – towards a new discipline: legal responses to religious pluralism in Europe’ (pp 68–92).

28 At its Annual Conference 2007, Canterbury, 3–5 April 2007.

29 See its website at <>, accessed 7 February 2008.

30 They also include the: Advisory Council of the Commission on Human Rights of the Russian Federation, Russian Academy of Scholars of Religion, Ukrainian State Committee on Religious Affairs, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Oslo Coalition on Freedom of Religion or Belief.

31 The paper considered by the Primates’ Meeting in 2001 was N Doe, ‘Canon law and communion’, (2002) 6 Ecc LJ 241–263. For a report of the Consultation in 2002, see J Rees, (2002) 6 Ecc LJ 399–401; for subsequent developments, see N Doe, ‘The common law of the Anglican Communion’, (2003) 7 Ecc LJ 4–16. The project was further encouraged by the Primates’ Statement (October 2003), and by the Lambeth Commission (The Windsor Report 2004 (London, 2004) para 114).

32 Revd Canon Gregory Cameron (as secretary to the commission), Rubie Nottage (Province of the West Indies) and Bernard Georges (Province of the Indian Ocean).

33 N Doe, ‘Communion and autonomy in Anglicanism: nature and maintenance’, available at <>, accessed 11 October 2007.

34 This proposed, with the Primates as signatories, a ‘concordat for incorporation by individual churches within their own canonical systems’ seeking ‘to increase the profile of communion, to define their inter-church relations, and for the resolution of inter-Anglican conflict’: N Doe, ‘Canon law and communion’, (2002) 6 Ecc LJ 241–263, esp 262.

35 The Windsor Report 2004, Appendix II.

36 The Covenant Design Group, at Nassau in January 2007, produced a new draft, endorsed by the Primates’ Meeting at Dar es Salaam in 2007, for consideration by the churches of the Communion and the Lambeth Conference in the summer of 2008. See N Doe, An Anglican Covenant: theological and legal considerations for a global debate (London, forthcoming, June 2008).

37 Seventh Report Session 2003–4, House of Lords, House of Commons, Joint Committee on Human Rights, HL paper 39, HC 382 (pp 57–70).

38 Document 11298, 8 June 2007: see the Parliamentary Assembly website, <>, accessed 11 October 2007.

39 A full report will appear in the next issue of this Journal.

40 London, Canterbury, Strasbourg, Paris, Pittsburgh (2000); Oxford, Vienna, Cape Town, Canterbury, Perugia, Strasbourg, Rome, Atlanta (2002); Newcastle, Thessaloniki, Strasbourg, Munster (2003); Budapest, Kanuga (2004); Strasbourg, Tübingen, Rome, Oxford, Tokyo (2005); Toronto, Nassau, Höor, Johannesburg, Durban, Cape Town, Oxford, Oslo, Manchester, Siena, Luton, Bath, Bangor, St Petersburg, Sligo (2006); Messina, Liverpool, Canterbury, London, Rome (2007).

41 Particularly Sharron Alldred, Sarah Kennedy and Helen Calvert.

42 In 2007, the Society generously established a prize for students in law and religion at Newcastle and Cardiff Law Schools.

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Ecclesiastical Law Journal
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  • EISSN: 1751-8539
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