Canon Law (2020/2021)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Giuseppe Comotti
Giuseppe Comotti
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
2° periodo di lezioni - febbraio/marzo 2021 dal Feb 15, 2021 al Mar 29, 2021.

Lesson timetable

Go to lesson schedule

Learning outcomes

The course aims to provide essential tools learning and analysis about the two-thousand years old juridical order of the Catholic Church. Despite its strong originality in comparison to the world of the secular laws, the law of the Church has played a significant role in the creation and the development of the european legal culture; many institutions and many solutions of the juridical problems adopted by the States laws are derived from the canonical models.
At the end of the course the student will be able to:
- to know and understand the fundamental principles, institutes and essential rules according to which the Catholic Church is juridically organized;
- to evaluate essential profiles of comparison between the Church's order and secular juridical systems, both in historical evolution and in current law.


The course aims at explaining thoroughly canon law’s sources of divine right and sources of human right, fundamental rights of the faithful and government structures of the universal Church and of the particular Churches. A special importance will be given to canon law on marriage, wich obtains civile power in the Concordat between Italy and the Holy See.
• Sources of Canon law: divine right and human right
• The canonical condition of the christian faithful: clerics, lay faithful, religious.
• The power of governance and the hierarchical constitution of the Church
• The ecclesiastical office
• Government of the universal Church. The Roman Pontiff and the College of Bishops.
• Government of the particular Churches. The diocese. The parish
• The temporal goods of the Church.
• The penal regulation in ecclesiastical law.
• The marriage. Cases to declare the nullity of marriage.

The teaching consists in:
• lectures on the course topics
• analysis of materials placed on e-earning platform and discussed during lectures, in order to foster a critical approach by students
• conferences by Italian and foreign experts, so as to provide students with different approaches to the subject

During the academic year the teacher receives students at the times indicated in web pages.
As long as the COVID emergency lasts, the receipt takes place exclusively online. Students are therefore advised to always anticipate the appointment by e-mail.
In addition to the indicated time, further remote appointments can be agreed with the teacher by e-mail.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
ARROBA CONDE M. J. - RIONDINO M. Introduzione al diritto canonico Le Monnier Università 2015 9788800746243
DALLA TORRE G. Lezioni di diritto canonico (Edizione 5) Giappichelli 2018 9788892114548

Assessment methods and criteria

Knowledge and skills provided will be verified with an final examination on the whole program.

Grades will be expressed in /30 taking into account knowledge of the subject, accuracy in response, quality of the legal reasoning and use of the correct legal terminology.

Students attending classes can prepare for the examination on lecture notes.