The Jurist (journal)

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The Jurist  
Discipline Canon Law
Language English
Edited by Kurt Martens
Publication details
Publication history
Frequency Twice yearly
Standard abbreviations
ISSN 0022-6858

The Jurist: Studies in Church Law and Ministry is the only journal published in the United States devoted to the study and promotion of Catholic canon law or church law. It was initiated in 1940[1] to serve the academic and professional needs of Catholic church lawyers. The first issue appeared on January 6, 1941.[2] Initial responses to the journal were favorable, as it was declared "We applaud its present performance and look forward to the improvement which its initial effort promises and which maturity will bring"[3] and "the first issue warrants the belief that the scholars of the United States will make valuable contributions to the study of canon law.".[4]

Until 1976, the journal was a quarterly publication, but since then it has been issued twice yearly; beginning with volume 71, the journal has been published for the School of Canon Law of the Catholic University of America by the Catholic University of America Press. The editorial board consists of the faculty of the School of Canon Law at the Catholic University of America, the only such school in the country, as well as Fr. Sean O. Sheridan, President of the Franciscan University of Steubenville and Monsignor Ronny Jenkins, General Secretary of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.[5] The journal is published in print form, but also forms part of the electronic collection Project MUSE.

Initially the journal focused largely on issues of Latin church law both in terms of its history, medieval and modern, and contemporary practice. However, within the past few decades since the Second Vatican Council, it has broadened its horizons and audience. For it also explores questions of interest to theologians, Eastern Catholic church lawyers, civil lawyers, diocesan planners and diocesan finance and personnel officials. Recent issues have contained the decisions of the Apostolic Signatura in Latin and English translation.

Previous editors included Jerome Daniel Hannan; Frederick R. McManus, who headed the journal from 1959-1989; James H. Provost; and Thomas J. Green. The editor is Kurt Martens.[6]


  1. ^ C. Joseph Nuesse The Catholic University of America: A Centennial History (Washington D.C.: The Catholic University of America Press, 1990)
  2. ^ Arthur J. Esplenage "The Jurist: 60 Years and Counting" The Jurist: Studies in Church Law and Ministry vol. 62(1) 2002, p.42.
  3. ^ American Ecclesiastical Review vol. 104 (March, 1941) p. 285.
  4. ^ John C. Ford "Current Moral Theology and Canon Law," Theological Studies 2 (1941) p. 556
  5. ^
  6. ^ nl:Kurt Martens