A key aspect of the work of the Centre is to bring people together to study law and religion as a means to greater ecumenical and interfaith understanding.
The Centre has four Networks which operate under its auspices.
The Colloquium of Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Lawyers
Convenor: Stephen Coleman
Background: The Colloquium was established in Rome in 1999, an initiative of the Pontifical University of St Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum), Centre for Law and Religion, Law School, Cardiff University, and Duquesne Law School, Pittsburgh, USA. The meeting is believed to have been the first of its type. Leaders of both communions have recognised the value of the Colloquium and its work.
Objects: The aim of the Colloquium is to contribute to greater ecumenical understanding between Anglicans and Roman Catholics from the perspective of canon law as a form of applied ecclesiology. The Colloquium explores ways in which the respective laws of each communion either facilitate or inhibit unity. A deeper understanding of the laws discloses what the communions share, a practical sign that ecumenism is reaching all levels of Christian life and thought. Greater visible ecclesial unity may be achieved when canonical possibilities which enable this are fully understood. In 1999 the colloquium members were presented to Pope John Paul II and in 2007 to Pope Benedict XVI, and in 2019, members Norman Doe and Mark Hill met Pope Francis at a general audience.
On 29 November 2019, a working group of the Colloquium met to discuss drafting a response to ARCIC III document, Walking Together on the Way. The Colloquium is to return to this in 2021.
The Nineteenth Colloquium, Rome April 2019: Liturgical Law
The Nineteenth Colloquium was held at the Venerable English College in Rome in April 2019. The topic under consideration was Liturgical Law. Using its method of pairing members from the Anglican team and from the Catholic team, there were paired papers from each team covering:
- the nature and purpose of liturgy
- the formation of liturgical texts
- the administration of liturgy
- the regulation of liturgical music
- liturgical discipline.
For the Anglican team, papers were contributed by Sion Hughes Carew (Church of England Legal Office), the Revd Russell Dewhurst (Church of England), Charlotte Wright (Cardiff Law School, Church in Wales), the Ven Dr Jane Steen (Church of England), the Revd Stephen Coleman (Church of England) the Revd Stephen Farrell (Church of Ireland), Mark Hill QC (Chancellor of Leeds), and Norman Doe.
The Roman Catholic papers were contributed by the Revd Dr Luke Beckett OSB (Ampleforth Abbey), the Revd Dr James Campbell SJ (Campion Hall, Oxford University), the Revd Andrew Cole (Diocese of Nottingham), Dr Helen Costigane SHCJ (St Mary’s University, London), and the Revd Dr Robert Ombres OP (Blackfriars, Oxford University). The Colloquium also welcomed the Rector of the English College, Monsignor Philip Whitmore, who spoke about liturgy in clerical formation in the Catholic Church, particularly as administered at the Venerabile. The colloquium members also met, at the offices of the Congregation responsible for liturgy, Archbishop Arthur Roche, Monsignor Brian Ferme and Fr Tony Currer.
The Eighteenth Colloquium, Jesus College Oxford, 2018: Canon Law in Action
The eighteenth Colloquium met 27–28 May 2018 at Jesus College, Oxford (where Norman Doe was a visiting fellow) to discuss the topic ‘Canon Law in Action.’ For the Anglican team, papers were contributed by Sion Hughes Carew (Church of England Legal Office), the Revd Russell Dewhurst (Church of England), the Revd Stephen Farrell (Church of Ireland), Charlotte Wright (Cardiff Law School, Church in Wales), and the Ven Dr Jane Steen (Church of England), whose paper was presented in her absence by Norman Doe (Centre Director).
The Roman Catholic papers were contributed by the Revd Dr Luke Beckett OSB (Ampleforth Abbey), the Revd Dr James Campbell SJ (Campion Hall, Oxford University), the Revd Andrew Cole (Diocese of Nottingham), Dr Helen Costigane SHCJ (St Mary’s University, London), and the Revd Dr Robert Ombres OP (Blackfriars, Oxford University). The event was also attended by the Worshipful Professor Mark Hill QC and the Revd Stephen Coleman (Church of England).
The papers compared the sources, structures, purposes, subjects, enforcement, and relaxation of canon law in the two communions.
The Past and Present Members of the Colloquium
The membership is a mix of practitioners and academics. Several of the members hold office or function in an advisory capacity in church government. The members have also published extensively. Over the series of colloquia the members have been:
- Revd Canon Gregory Cameron, former Deputy Secretary General, Anglican Communion and now Bishop of St Asaph, Church in Wales)
- Stephen Coleman, Church of England and Cardiff Law School
- Norman Doe, Professor, Director, Centre for Law and Religion, Cardiff
- Brian Hanson, Legal Adviser, General Synod, Church of England
- Frank Helminski, Chancellor, Diocese of Minnesota, Episcopal Church, USA
- Mark Hill QC, Hon Prof, Cardiff Law School, Chancellor, Diocese in Europe
- Anthony Jeremy, Solicitor and Fellow, Centre for Law and Religion, Cardiff
- Anne McGavin, Chancellor, Scottish Episcopal Church
- His Hon Judge Philip Price, Chancellor, Diocese of Monmouth, Church in Wales
- Revd Canon John Rees, Legal Adviser to the Anglican Consultative Council
- Stephen Slack, Chief Legal Adviser, Archbishops’ Council, Church of England
- Sion Hughes Carew (Church of England Legal Office)
- Revd Russell Dewhurst (Church of England)
- Revd Stephen Farrell (Church of Ireland)
- Charlotte Wright (Cardiff Law School, Church in Wales)
- Ven Dr Jane Steen (Archdeacon of Southwark, Church of England)
Roman Catholic Team:
- Michael Carragher OP, Professor of Canon Law, Angelicum
- James Conn SJ, Professor of Canon Law, Gregorian
- Nicholas Cafardi, Dean, Law School, Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, USA
- Ben Earle OP, Angelicum, Rome
- Brian Ferme, Professor, and Dean, Canon Law Faculty, CUA, Washington
- Joseph Fox OP, Professor of Canon Law, Angelicum
- Michael Hilbert SJ, Dean of the Canon Law Faculty, Gregorian
- Aidan McGrath OFM, Former Secretary General, Franciscan Order
- Robert Ombres OP, Former Dominican Procurator General; Blackfriars, Oxford
- Sr Melanie Di Pietro SC, Buchanan Ingersol, Pittsburgh, USA
- Dimitri Salachas, Professor of Canon Law, Orientale
- Fr Fintan Gavin, Vice-Chancellor of the Archdiocese of Dublin
- Fr Kevin Gillespie, Congregation for the Clergy, Vatican
- Fr Justin Wachs, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Vatican
- Revd Dr Luke Beckett OSB, Ampleforth Abbey
- Revd Dr James Campbell SJ, Campion Hall, Oxford University
- Revd Andrew Cole, Diocese of Nottingham
- Dr Helen Costigane SHCJ, St Mary’s University, London
- Revd Dr Robert Ombres OP, Blackfriars, Oxford University
Methodist Observer: Revd Gareth Powell, Ecumenical Officer (Wales)
A Decade of Ecumenical Dialogue on Canon Law, a 45-page report on the first ten years of the Colloquium of Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Lawyers, was published in the September 2009 edition of Ecclesiastical Law Journal.
N. Doe, ed., The Approaches to Public Matters and Private Matters in Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Law, The Acts of the Thirteenth Colloquium of Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Lawyers (Cardiff: Centre for Law and Religion, 2016).
N. Doe, ed., The Teaching of Canon Law in Anglicanism and the Roman Catholic Church, The Acts of the Fourteenth Colloquium of Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Lawyers (Cardiff: Centre for Law and Religion, 2016).
N. Doe, ed., Counsel and Consent: Church Government in Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Law, The Acts of the Fifteenth Colloquium of Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Lawyers (Cardiff: Centre for Law and Religion, 2016).
N. Doe, ed., Bishops in Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Law, The Acts of the Seventeenth Colloquium of Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Lawyers (Cardiff: Centre for Law and Religion, 2018).
N. Doe, ed., Marriage in Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Law, Acts of the Colloquium of Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Lawyers, Malta 2008 (Cardiff: Centre for Law and Religion, 2009)
N. Doe, ed., The Formation and Ordination of Clergy in Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Law, Acts of the Colloquium of Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Lawyers, Rome 2005, Johannesburg 2006, Rome 2007 (Cardiff: Centre for Law and Religion, 2009)
J. Conn, N. Doe, J. Fox, eds., Initiation, Membership and Authority in Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Law (Rome, 2005)
M. Hill, ed., Faithful Discipleship: Clergy Discipline in Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Law (Rome, 2001)
J. Fox, ed., Render unto Caesar: Property in Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Law (Rome, 1999)
The Interfaith Legal Advisors Network
Convenor: Rebecca Riedel (Fellow)
Background: The first of its kind in the UK, the Interfaith Legal Advisers Network (ILAN) was established by the Centre of Law and Religion in December 2007. It was developed in response to the large number of recent high-profile court cases involving religion, e.g. on religious dress, sacred animals, and faith schools and considerable challenges for faith groups posed by civil religion law.
Objects: The Network seeks to facilitate an ongoing discussion providing members with a greater understanding of their respective religious legal systems and the common issues they face at the interface of religious and religion law.
Meetings: In April 2019, LARSN members met at the Middle Temple London, with Jewish, Christian and Muslim leaders to discuss the book by Norman Doe, Comparative Religious Law: Judaism, Christianity, Islam (Cambridge University Press). This was followed by the launch of this book at the Temple Church.
Law and Religion Scholars Network (LARSN)
Convenor: Christopher Grout (Fellow)
Christopher Grout is a barrister and Registrar of the Qatar International Court and Dispute Resolution Centre. He holds an LLM in Canon Law from Cardiff University. He is a Deputy District Judge in England and Wales, exercising a civil and family law jurisdiction. He is also a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.
Mission: The Law and Religion Scholars Network (‘LARSN’) seeks to bring together scholars who share an interest and passion in the field of law and religion in order to facilitate dialogue and discussion on an ever-growing number of topics of interest. In particular, LARSN aims to:
- Disseminate knowledge and expertise regarding the interrelationship of law and religion,
- Provide a forum through which academic research and ideas can be constructively discussed,
- Facilitate its expansion and diversity by increasing the number of academic members, including from differing backgrounds, with a particular focus on welcoming and encouraging those who are new to academia;
- Promote relationship building among scholars (both members and non-members), and
- Contribute to the wider impact of law and religion in society through promoting law and religion as a mainstream legal discipline.
LARSN was established in 2008 as an initiative led by the Centre for Law and Religion at Cardiff University. It seeks to facilitate discussion among scholars on a whole range of topics concerning law and religion, not just in the United Kingdom but across the world. As of 2020, LARSN has approximately 300 members, a membership which it is looking to expand and diversify.
Each year, LARSN aims to hold a one-day Annual Conference at which its membership convenes, both in plenary and smaller break-out sessions, to present academic papers and discuss the same in a constructive and meaningful way. A report is prepared which summarises the key findings and points of interest arising out of the event, as well as proposals concerning future topics for research and discussion. With the consent of the relevant authors, academic papers and reports are made available to the membership and are also posted on LARSN’s website for other interested parties to read and consider.
The Church Law History Network
Convenor: Stephen Coleman
Objects: This is a new network. It will hold its inaugural meeting in the summer of 2021. The meeting will be attended by an invited group of a dozen scholars who will have papers on the legal history of the Church of England from the Reformation to the present day. Further information to follow.