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The aim of this short paper is to examine whether and how canon law might be acknowledged as one of the instruments of Anglican unity. First, the study proposes that there are principles of canon law recognised by churches. These are rooted in the canonical tradition shared by churches of the catholic and apostolic tradition. Secondly, the following proposes that the profound similarities between Anglican legal systems indicate, as a matter of descriptive fact, what Anglicans share in common juridically. Together, the principles of canon law and the similarities between Anglican legal systems represent the common law of the Anglican Communion. Thirdly, the study addresses some methodological issues raised in ascertaining and formulating the canonical principles of the Anglican his commune. Finally, it suggests some reasons and justifications for an acknowledgement of the Anglican common law.
The Data Protection Act 1998 came into force on 1 March 2000. It replaced the Data Protection Act 1984, and implements the EU Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC. This paper examines its implications for the Church.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, more commonly known as the ‘LDS’ or ‘Mormon’ Church, regulates its membership by means of a system that recalls the Old Testament far more than the modern West. All important decisions relating to joining and leaving the church are invested in the inspired discretion of local priesthood authorities who are governed by general standards rather than rules that have the character of law.
A convenient starting point for these reflections is the Ordinance of William I, separating the Spiritual and Temporal Jurisdictions, issued some time between 1070 and 1076. If strictly adhered to this might have prevented some subsequent conflicts, but as we know, the next hundred years saw a number of conflicts in the course of the Investiture Contest leading to the murder of Thomas Becket in 1170. Further conflict in the reign of King John ended in Magna Carta of which Archbishop Stephen Langton is thought to have been the chief inspiration.
The Jews have been a source of constant trouble to the judiciary of this country; but, to be fair, only for the last 350 years. Between 1066, when the first Jews to settle here came over from what is now France in the wake of the Norman Conquest, to 1290, when the Jews were expelled, Jewish issues do not appear to have concerned the judges. This discussion of judicial involvement with Jewish issues begins in 1655, when, following Menasseh ben Israel's famous initiative, two senior judges, Chief Justice Glyn and Chief Baron Steel, advised the assembly that had been summoned by Cromwell to consider the matter, that ‘there was no law which forbids the Jews’return into England’.
The public religion of the Isle of Man is protestant Christianity in the liturgical tradition of the English Prayer Book. The religious establishment is headed by a bishop, who has been since 1541 subject to the oversight of the Archbishop of York.
The principal item of legislative business at the July Group of Sessions was the Church of England (Pensions) Measure, which had received final approval in November 2001 (see 6 Ecc LJ 298). On its submission to the Ecclesiastical Committee of Parliament, the Committee indicated that it opposed the inclusion of a power (exercisable by statutory instrument passed under the negative resolution procedure) to extend beyond 2011 the power enjoyed by the Church Commissioners under the Pensions Measure 1997 to spend capital to meet their pre-1998 pensions liabilities. The Ecclesiastical Committee preferred that any further extension of that power should be achieved by a fresh Measure.
The April meeting was confined to a single day of formal business, the Standing Committee having reached the conclusion that with a relatively light agenda on this occasion, it was a more efficient use of resources to have one full day's business than spread the work of the session over two days. The meeting took place shortly after the death of Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother and at the start of the meeting all present stood in silence as a mark of respect to her.
A Eucharist set the Synod in motion, the preacher being the Bishop of Manicaland, Zimbabwe. A formal welcome by the Primus followed, in which he encouraged the Synod, since conflict was intrinsic to human experience, to engage in it creatively and in a way which would enliven the mission of the Church. The good wishes of the Synod were then sent to Her Majesty the Queen in this her golden jubilee year. A break ensued for lunch before the Synod pursued its agenda.
Anyone who liked liturgy would have loved Church of Ireland General Synod 2002. There were no less than nine liturgical Bills for consideration. These included traditional and modern forms of marriage service together with a form of prayer and dedication after a civil marriage. It was emphasised in the introduction to this latter Bill that the object was not to provide a service of blessing such as used to be suggested for divorced couples who used not to have access to the marriage service, but to deal with occasions where, for various reasons, couples would undergo a civil ceremony first.