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Principles of Christian Law

  • Mark Hill (a1) and Norman Doe (a2)
Abstract

A panel of experts has produced a Statement of Principles of Christian Law, drawn from an examination of their internal regulatory instruments. These principles are offered for further examination by comparative scholars of church law, as an expression of shared ecclesiology, and in furtherance of the ecumenical endeavour.

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1 See Hill, M et al. , ‘A decade of ecumenical dialogue on canon law’, (2009) 11 Ecc LJ 284328 .

2 The expressions ‘law’, ‘order’ and ‘polity’ are variously used to describe the systems of internal regulation by which differing denominations govern themselves. For convenience, we use the term ‘law’ throughout this document as a shorthand embracing all three terms.

3 The panel was convened by Professor Mark Hill QC, together with Professor Norman Doe. Its membership also comprised: Revd John Chalmers (former Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland), Revd Ken Howcroft (former President of the Methodist Church in Great Britain), Aidan McGrath OFM (Secretary General of the Franciscan Order), Robert Ombres OP (Blackfriars Oxford, formerly Procurator General of the Dominican Order), Professor Leon van den Broeke (Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam), Professor Leo Koffeman (Protestant Theological University, Amsterdam), Professor Nikos Maghioros (Aristotle University, Thessaloniki), Anna Trônet (diocesan lawyer, Church of Sweden) and Revd Dr John Weaver (former Principal, South Wales Baptist College). It had the benefit of contributions from Fr Tony Currer (Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian Unity), Archbishop Sir David Moxon (Archbishop of Canterbury's Representative to the Holy See), Revd Marcus Walker (Associate Director, Anglican Centre in Rome), Revd Tim Macquiban (Methodist Church) and Revd Dr Peter Stevenson (Principal, South Wales Baptist College). Revd Dr Paul Goodliff (former Head of Ministry at the Baptist Union of Great Britain and Associate Fellow, Spurgeon's College London) joined the panel in 2016. The panel wishes to acknowledge the generous hospitality of the Venerable English College, Rome and its Rector Mgr Philip Whitmore, and His Excellency Nigel Baker, formerly HM Ambassador to the Holy See.

4 Doe, N, Christian Law: contemporary principles (Cambridge, 2013).

5 The Panel of Experts meets next in Geneva in November 2017, at which time it is hoped to share its work with the Director of the WCC's Faith and Order Commission, Professor Odair Pedroso Mateus.

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Ecclesiastical Law Journal
  • ISSN: 0956-618X
  • EISSN: 1751-8539
  • URL: /core/journals/ecclesiastical-law-journal
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