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Code of Canon Law


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CHAPTER III.

PRIVATE ASSOCIATIONS OF THE CHRISTIAN FAITHFUL

Can. 321 The Christian faithful guide and direct private associations according to the prescripts of the statutes.

Can. 322 §1. A private association of the Christian faithful can acquire juridic personality through a formal decree of the competent ecclesiastical authority mentioned in can. 312.

§2. No private association of the Christian faithful can acquire juridic personality unless the ecclesiastical authority mentioned in can. 312, §1 has approved its statutes. Approval of the statutes, however, does not change the private nature of the association.

Can. 323 §1. Although private associations of the Christian faithful possess autonomy according to the norm of can.

321, they are subject to the vigilance of ecclesiastical authority according to the norm of can. 305 and even to the governance of the same authority.

§2. It also pertains to ecclesiastical authority, while respecting the autonomy proper to private associations, to be watchful and careful that dissipation of their energies is avoided and that their exercise of the apostolate is ordered to the common good.

Can. 324 §1. A private association of the Christian faithful freely designates its moderator and officials according to the norm of the statutes.

§2. A private association of the Christian faithful can freely choose a spiritual advisor, if it desires one, from among the priests exercising ministry legitimately in the diocese; nevertheless, he needs the confirmation of the local ordinary.

Can. 325 §1. A private association of the Christian faithful freely administers those goods it possesses according to the prescripts of the statutes, without prejudice to the right of competent ecclesiastical authority to exercise vigilance so that the goods are used for the purposes of the association.

§2. A private association is subject to the authority of the local ordinary according to the norm of can. 1301 in what pertains to the administration and distribution of goods which have been donated or left to it for pious causes.

Can. 326 §1. A private association of the Christian faithful ceases to exist according to the norm of its statutes. The competent authority can also suppress it if its activity causes grave harm to ecclesiastical doctrine or discipline or is a scandal to the faithful.

§2. The allocation of the goods of an association which has ceased to exist must be determined according to the norm of its statutes, without prejudice to acquired rights and the intention of the donors.




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