Chapter

The Power of Office

Bernard Cooke

in Power and the Spirit of God

Published in print November 2004 | ISBN: 9780195174519
Published online January 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780199835119 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195174518.003.0004
 The Power of Office

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People's ordinary understanding of ‘power’ is the authority exercised by civil or religious officials. To limit a very broad topic but still illustrate the power inherent in ‘office’, this chapter focuses on the dynamic historically operative in the power of Church officials, specifically in the Roman Catholic community. Tracing the gradual evolution of ecclesiastical power from initial judgment against sin to overall ruling of Christian faith and life, the chapter treats ‘the power of orders’ as it moves from social location to internal power to grant ‘grace’ through ritual presidency. It then describes ‘the power of jurisdiction’ as it emerges in the Middle Ages and gradually controls Church order and Church teaching.

Keywords: Church; civil; ecclesiastical; judgment; office; power of jurisdiction; power of orders; teaching

Chapter.  8373 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

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