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EDITOR’S INTRODUCTION This issue of The Jurist is divided into three parts. First it contains a series of essays by members of the Peter and Paul Seminar on the general theme: “Conversion and Reform in View of the Unity of the Church.” Secondly, it includes a number of essays on various themes of legalpastoral interest. Finally it contains a number of book reviews on topics of theological-canonical-historical interest. Readers of The Jurist are undoubtedly familiar with the work of members of the Peter and Paul Seminar which has appeared in various issues over the past decade. The Seminar initiated by Ladislas Orsy, S.J. in 1998 has been especially concerned with examining the implementation of the theological teachings of Vatican II in the life of the Church and its law. A key Seminar goal has been enhancing the Church’s exercise of its threefold mission by connecting more closely the conciliar vision of the Church and the provisions of church law. To achieve this purpose the Seminar has periodically brought together theologians, canonists, and historians among others to explore various legal-pastoral implications of that vision.1 Over the years the Seminar has systematically addressed various structural concerns in the Church. For example, initially it explored different implications of collegiality at various levels of ecclesial life: universal , regional, and diocesan.2 Subsequently it examined varied aspects of the theme of the local church and synodality with special emphasis on the role of the diocesan bishop especially in his varied relationships within that church.3 As the Seminar members reflected on various theological-canonical issues with profound ecclesial implications, several things became clear. Vatican II highlighted the importance of an aggiornamento regarding our understanding of the Church itself, of the Church in the world, and of the Church especially in its relationship to other Christians. The council faThe Jurist 71 (2011) 1–3 1 1 For a particularly thoughtful overview of the origins and purposes of the Peter and Paul Seminar, see Myriam Wijlens, “ ‘Peter and Paul Seminar’: A Follow-up by Theologians and Canon Lawyers to the Groupe des Dombes’ Publication For the Conversion of the Churches,” The Jurist 64 (2004) 6–20. One issue of The Jurist which contained various theological-canonical articles by Peter and Paul Seminar members rather than examining one overarching topic was volume 69 (2009) 329–468. 2 See The Jurist 64 (2004) 1–383. 3 See ibid., 68 (2008) 321–496; 69 (2009) 1–169. 2 the jurist thers experienced a conversion and hence were able to take significant steps in fostering ecclesial reform in various areas. Responding to the continuing call for such reform today requires a continuing conversion by all the faithful and by the Church as a whole. Otherwise structural reforms , however impressive, will have little long-term impact on the Church’s mission. Such concerns prompted Dr. Myriam Wijlens, to arrange for an interdisciplinary conference on “Conversion and Reform inView of the Unity of the Church” at the University of Erfurt, Germany. Dr. Wijlens, one of the Seminar’s original participants, holds the chair of canon law in the Faculty of Theology at Erfurt. The conference held on January 29–31, 2009 was intended to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the calling of Vatican II by John XXIII and the twenty fifth anniversary of the promulgation of the Latin code. Among the key questions addressed by the conference were the meaning of conversion and reform, individual and group conversion, the criteria for judging true and false reform, and the role of canonical structures in fostering such reform. This issue of The Jurist contains five essays on themes considered in Erfurt, most of whose authors were present at the conference.4 Joseph Famerée (Louvain) examines the criteria for discerning true from false reform especially as articulated by Yves Congar. Henk Witte (Tilburg) considers reform with the help of juxtapositions in official documents and sees them as a challenge to interpretation. Two essays have particularly significant ecumenical overtones. Catherine Clifford (Ottawa) focuses on the influence of ecumenical dialogues on doctrinal and canonical development. Her experience with the Catholic-Lutheran dialogue prompts Margaret O’Gara (Toronto) to highlight the...

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Additional Information

ISSN
2326-6236
Print ISSN
0022-6858
Pages
pp. 1-3
Launched on MUSE
2016-07-06
Open Access
No
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