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The Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei: Purpose and Competence


The Pontifical commission Ecclesia Dei has developed from a body only focused on reconciling members of the Society of St. Pius X with the church to a more permanent office overseeing the implementation of the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum and the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite, in addition to its continuing concern for reconciliation. The first part of this article reviews the relevant legislation concerning the Pontifical commission Ecclesia Dei, and shows that the purpose of the commission has evolved in response to changing needs of the faithful. Its second part reviews possible conflicts of competence with the dicasteries of the Roman curia and diocesan bishops. The article hopes to show how this commission helps the Roman Pontiff fulfill his duty to maintain the communion of the church through his pastoral care for all catholics, while noting how conflicts of competence could hamper its effectiveness.

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