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censure referring to books. Authors and publishers who, without the necessary permission, cause to be printed books of Sacred Scripture or notes or commentaries on them incur ipso facto an unreserved excommunication. This corresponds exactly with the censure contained in section IV, n. v, of the Apostolicae Sedis, and afterwards incorporated in the Constitution Officiorum et munerum.1

The changes in regard to condemned societies are also very slight. According to the Apostolicae Sedis, excommunication simply reserved to the Holy See was incurred by members of Masonic and other similar societies that plot against the Church or against legitimate civil authority, by those who show favour to these societies, and by those who fail to denounce the secret leaders in them.2

The corresponding legislation in the Code is contained in Canon 2335. The societies banned are the same--Masonic and similar societies that plot against the Church and the legitimate civil authorities; and so also is the ipso facto punishment inflicted-excommunication simply reserved to the Holy See. Just as in the Bull Apostolicae Sedis, membership of these societies involves the penalty. There is no mention, however, in the Code of those who show favour to these societies; but, in accordance with the general principles on co-operation in Canons 2209 and 2231, the punishment is also incurred by those who so command, advise, or assist others to become members, that without their interference membership would not have resulted. Assistance of any other kind will be no longer visited with excommunication, though, of course, it will still continue sinful. So, too, in the Code, nothing is said in regard to the denunciation of secret leaders; and hence, failure in this respect will not in future involve the penalty decreed against membership. It is prescribed, however, that clerics and religious who become members of such societies should be denounced to the Holy Office; but no special penalty is threatened for failure to comply with this obligation.

(b) An extended comparison between the old and new discipline on the censorship and prohibition of books is impossible in the brief space at our disposal: anything approaching a complete discussion of the subject would require at least a couple of articles. We must, therefore, confine ourselves at present to a brief outline of the principal changes introduced.

The index legislation prior to the publication of the Code was contained almost entirely in the Constitution Officiorum et munerum; the Code deals with the subject in Canons 1384-1405. In both, the whole matter is divided into two heads the censorship of books; their prohibition.

Censorship of Books.-Under both the old and new legislations certain writings before publication required the approbation of the Holy See, and certain others that of the Ordinary. There is practically no change

1 Conc. Trid., Sess. IV, Decret., De editione et usu Sacrorum Librorum. 2 Sec. II, n. iv.

in regard to the two classes. The permission of the Holy See is still required for the publication of: 1°, Vernacular versions of the Bible that have neither note or comment (c. 1391); 2°, Books that have been condemned by the Holy See (c. 1398, § 2); 3°, Works which have reference to causes of beatification and canonization of Servants of God, whilst the causes are still under discussion (c. 1887); 4o, Collections of decrees of the Roman Congregations (c. 1889); 5°, Authentic collections of prayers and pious works to which the Holy See has attached indulgences, and also lists and summaries of indulgences either previously collected but not approved, or now collected for the first time (c. 1388, § 2). This regulation on indulgences is much more definite than the old one.1

Neither has any change been made in regard to the publications which should be submitted for censorship to the Ordinary. A change, however, has been introduced regarding the Ordinary from whom approval must be sought. Previous to the publication of the Officiorum et munerum, the approval should be given by the Ordinary of the place in which the printing was done; 2 this Constitution, however, transferred the right to the Ordinary of the place of publication. Now, permission may be sought either from the author's own local Ordinary, or from the Ordinary of the place of printing, or from the Ordinary of the place of publication (c. 1885, § 2).

According to the Constitution Officiorum et munerum, a member of the secular clergy was forbidden to publish books on profane subjects without previously consulting his Ordinary, and to undertake the direction of newspapers and periodicals without previously obtaining his consent. The corresponding regulation in the Code. is much more strict. For the publication of profane books seculars must obtain their Ordinary's permission: they require it also, not merely to undertake the direction of, but even to write in, newspapers and periodicals. In similar circumstances religious require the permission both of their own Superior and of the local Ordinary (c. 1386, § 1).

We notice a few slight changes in regard to the censor. Thus it is now prescribed that his opinion should be given in writing (c. 1393, § 4). That, indeed, was the usual form of procedure in the past, though, as far as we can see, it was not obligatory. The Code also forbids the censor's name to be made known to an author until a favourable opinion of his work has been given (c. 1393, § 5).

Prohibition of Books. The regulations on the prohibition of books are less changed even than those which regard censorship.

The Code removes all doubts as to the precise force of the prohibition of a book. Canon 1398, § 1, states that it'effects that a book without

1 Cf. Const. Off. et munerum, reg. xvii, resp. S. C. Indicis, 7 August, 1897. 2 Reg. X, Indicis Tridentine: In aliis vero locis ad episcopum civitatis vel dioecesis in qua impressio fiet ejus approbatio et examen pertineat.' 8 Reg. XXXV: Approbatio librorum. pertinet ad Ordinarium loci


in quo publici juris fiunt.'

4 Reg. XLII.

the necessary permission cannot be published, read, retained, translated into another language, nor in any way communicated to others.' Hitherto some authors considered that it prevented only the defence, publication, retention, and reading of books. Others, however, gave it practically the same implication as that now attributed to it by the Code. Thus Wernz writes: 'Since the word prohibition has been used. simply by the legislator, it must evidently be understood in accordance. with the old law, and therefore it refers to reading, retention, publication, defence, sale, and other similar actions by which the prohibited writing can come into the hands of others.' 2

The powers of local Ordinaries and particular Councils are confirmed (c. 1395, § 1). The abbots of independent monasteries and the supreme Superiors of exempt clerical institutes, so far as their own. subjects are concerned, are now on the same footing as local Ordinaries (c. 1395, § 3). Formerly, indeed, they might forbid their subjects to read certain books, but only through the vow of obedience, not in virtue of the power of jurisdiction.

In regard to the ipso facto prohibitions of the general law, the Constitution Officiorum et munerum forbade newspapers and periodicals which expressly attack religion and good morals. In the Code there is no mention of newspapers and periodicals: books of this description alone are interdicted (c. 1399, § 3). Under the term book (liber) periodicals also are included, if they are sufficiently large and if their general purport is an attack upon religion or good morals. Otherwise, apart from changes in the form of expression, the ipso facto prohibitions are practically the


We notice that Cardinals, Bishops, and other Ordinaries, if they take the necessary precautions, are not bound by the ecclesiastical prohibition of books. Formerly, indeed, they could use in their own favour, any dispensing power which they possessed, but, so far as we know, they were per se bound by the Index legislation.


REV. DEAR SIR,-(a) Canon 618, §2, 2°. What is the meaning of 'in religionibus laicalibus'?-does the term include nuns and sisters? or does it refer only to religious communities of men who are not priests?

(b) In some religious Orders of women, such as the Presentation, Sisters remain three years in the novitiate-two years as 'white veils ' and one year after profession. May they continue this practice, or does the new Code require a modification?

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(c) Canon 565, § 3, states that, During the year of novitiate the novices must not be employed . . . in the external charges (muniis) of the Institute. . . . What is the scope of the word muniis? Is the novice debarred from teaching a class in the convent school under the charge and supervision of the Superioress?

1 Vermeersch, De Prohibitione et Censura Librorum, n. 47.

2 Jus Decret., tom. iii. n. 111, nota 53.

3 Cf. Vermeersch, op cit., n. 34.

(d) Canon 574 deals with First Profession. On the completion of the novitiate, the novice, in an Order that has perpetual vows, makes a profession of simple vows for three years (ad triennium valituram). On the day of her profession is the formula to contain the words, ' . . . for three years'? Or is it permissible to take these three years singulatim, and make profession for a year at a time? The point becomes of practical importance should the Sister leave, say, at the end of the first year. If the triennium of § 1 is meant to be an unbroken three, is the same to be said of the triennium mentioned in § 2?


(a) The term includes Nuns and Sisters. According to the general definition in Canon 488, 4°, female communities are religiones laicales; and no indication is given that any special meaning is attached to the term in the section under consideration.

(b) The practice of spending two years in the novitiate before profession may be continued. The Code, indeed, prescribes a novitiate of one year, but as a minimum not a maximum period. This is evident from Canon 555, § 2, which states that if a longer time (than one year) is prescribed in the constitutions for the novitiate, it is not required for the validity of profession, unless in the same constitutions the contrary is expressly stated.'

It is another question, however, whether it is lawful for the newlyprofessed religious to continue in the novitiate for another year after their profession. The difficulty against a practice of this kind arises from Canon 564, § 1, in which it is stated that the novitiate shall be, as far as possible, separated from that part of the house inhabited by the professed religious, so that, without a special cause and the permission of the Superioress or the Directress, the novices may not have communication with the professed religious, nor these latter with the novices.' It would certainly be more in accordance with the letter and spirit of this regulation to remove the newly-professed religious' immediately after their profession from the novitiate; but at the same time we should hesitate to assert that the practice in question is condemned absolutely by it. We think that the requirements of this canon are substantially fulfilled, if the separation between the novices and the general body of the professed is observed.

(c) From a comparison with the Normae and its commentators it is evident that the external charges forbidden in this canon are distinguished from charges, works, or exercises the direct purpose of which is the internal spiritual formation of the novices. Hence, under the term munia exteriora are included all external works or exercises which have for their immediate object something other than internal spiritual formation and sanctification of the novices. Teaching is certainly a work of this kind: a novice is, therefore, debarred from teaching a class in a convent school, even under the charge and supervision of a Superioress. As we have already hinted, the Normae also forbade novices to engage

1 Normae, Art. 73. Cf. Battandier, Guide Canonique, n. 143; Piat, Prael. Juris Reg., tom. i. q. 125; Vermeersch, De Religiosis, tom. ii. p. (148), n. 56.

in the external charges of their Institute. It was pointed out, however, that, if the novitiate extended over two years, the prohibition did not hold for the second year.1 That the same thing will be also true in the new discipline is evident from Canon 565, § 3. During the year of novitiate,' it states, novices must not be employed . . . in the external charges of the Institute, etc.' Clearly the restriction applies only to the canonical year.

(d) It is quite plain from Canon 574 that the formula must contain the words for three years,' and that the simple temporary profession lasts for this period, unless the Constitutions already require annual professions, in which case the annual professions may be retained.


REV. DEAR SIR,-May a professed nun who has made only simple vows-e.g., a Sister of Charity or Mercy-renounce in favour of a party other than her Superioress or religious Superiors the right acquired after profession, which the laws of the country, such as those governing the intestacy of a deceased brother, give her to certain property?

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She may not renounce these rights, either in favour of her Superiors or of anybody else. This is evident from Canon 583, 1°, which declares that those who have made profession of simple vows in any religious Congregation may not abdicate gratuitously the dominion over their property by a voluntary deed of conveyance (per actum inter vivos).' In accordance, however, with Canon 569 she must cede the administration of property acquired in this way to whomsoever she wishes, and, unless the Constitutions determine otherwise, dispose freely of its use and usufruct. The prohibition to abdicate gratuitously the property, per actum inter vivos, indicates that it may be freely disposed of by will.


In the last issue of the I. E. RECORD, in reply to a query, we expressed the opinion that, in dioceses in which there is no Chapter, the diocesan Consultors have now the right of appointing the Vicar-Capitular or Administrator of the diocese during its vacancy. A decision of the Codex Commission, published in the current number of the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, confirms this view. It is well known, of course, that long previous to the publication of the Code, there were diocesan Consultors in the United States of America. The election of a Vicar-Capitular or Administrator of the diocese during its vacancy was not, however, one

1 Normae, Art. 74.

2 Acta Ap. Sedis, March, 1919, p. 75.

8 Vide Conc. Pl. Baltimorensis, III, Acta et Decreta, n. 17 et seq.

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